Iain Duncan Smith has “fundamentally failed” in his responsibility to look after unemployed and vulnerable people, says the Public and Commercial Services union (PCS).
PCS says Iain Duncan Smith’s flagship Universal Credit is a “textbook case” of his disastrous time as Work and Pensions Secretary, adding that he also faces serious questions over the deaths of thousands of sick and disabled benefit claimants.
The Government originally planned to have four million people claiming Universal Credit by May, but the latest figures show that only around 65,000 people are on the caseload.
Universal Credit has been “beset by soaring costs, wasted money, poor IT, low staff morale and industrial action, and has been the subject of scathing assessments from the National Audit Office and the government’s own Major Projects Authority.”
PCS says they broadly accept that the benefits system needs to be simplified, but say policies like the bedroom tax and benefit cap are “ideology rather than practical policy-making”.
Tax credit cuts and the public sector pay cap “mean a double hit for public servants”, says PCS.
The incomes of public sector workers have already fallen by a fifth under the previous coalition Government.
PCS general secretary Mark Serwotka said:
“How Iain Duncan Smith, who was fundamentally failed in his job, has remained in his post is a political mystery that will confound pundits for generations to come.
“Universal credit has been a textbook case of how not to overhaul public services and his cruel cuts to social security support for unemployed, sick and disabled people bring shame on the UK as a civilised nation.”