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Paisley’s MSP Welcomes Charities Social Advice Service

George Adam MSP is urging deaf in Paisley who have queries about benefits decisions to use a charity’s welfare rights advocacy service.

 

The service, which is run by the charity Action on Hearing Loss Scotland, can provide people who are Deaf or have hearing loss – including British Sign Language (BSL) users – with information, advice and, where possible, formal representation to challenge benefits decisions.

 

George Adam MSP said: “I’m pleased to support Action on Hearing Loss Scotland’s welfare rights advocacy service which provides valuable advice and reassurance for deaf or hard of hearing people who are concerned or confused about their social security benefits.

 

“I encourage people in Paisley who are Deaf or have hearing loss to contact the service if you would like to be better informed about the support you may be entitled to.”

George alongside Eileen, Director of Action on Hearing Loss

Eileen Clarkson, Director of Action on Hearing Loss Scotland and George Adam, Paisley’s MSP.

 

Delia Henry, Director of Action on Hearing Loss Scotland, said: “We’re delighted to have George Adam MSP’s backing for our welfare rights advocacy service which is making a real difference to the everyday lives of deaf people trying to access Personal Independence Payment (PIP) in particular.

 

“If you are Deaf or have hearing loss and need some help to understand letters you have received regarding your benefits, our Welfare Rights Officer would be delighted to help you make sense of it all.”

 

For information about Action on Hearing Loss Scotland’s social security advice service, call telephone: 0141 341 5346, textphone: 0141 341 5350, email: SocialSecurity@hearingloss.org.uk or visit www.hearingloss.org.uk/SocialSecurity.  British Sign Language users can contact via the ContactSCOTLAND-BSL service

George Looks Towards Fairer Welfare System in an Independent Scotland

George Adam MSPPaisley’s MSP George Adam has joined Deputy First Minister Nicola Sturgeon in slamming the Tory UK Government for the increased amount of benefit sanctions being handed out to job seekers. While asking a question of the Deputy First Minister about how we would reform welfare in an independent Scotland, George went on to ask if she shared his concerns about the current changes to the welfare system.

Commenting George said, “The Deputy First Minster rightly pointed out that we want a welfare system in an independent Scotland that is fair and does everything possible to help people into work but which also provides a decent, civilised safety net for people when they need it. I do not want this current system which is making an ever increasing number of my constituents come to me for help and advice after they have had their benefits sanctioned. This is no coincidence, the increase in the number of sanctions if not happening for no reason, it’s happening as a result of the Westminster dogma to cut back on welfare spending, no matter the cost to real people with real families to support and real bills to pay.

‘I have had constituents come to my office after having their benefits sanctioned and they have not even been told what for. They then need to wait weeks after submitting an appeal to find out, no surprise here, that the appeal has been rejected. This leaves them with no money what so ever or having to reply on hardship payments. One of the most staggering things I have noticed is that the DWP staff seem to be getting told from on high to push people towards food banks. The reason food banks are on the rise is due to, among other things, benefit sanctions. Isn’t it perverse that the rise in use of food banks is being used by the UK Government as almost an alternative to getting Job Seekers Allowance?

‘I’ve had more than one constituent come and tell me that they have had their benefit sanctioned because they attended a job interview instead of signing on. I’ve had people not able to afford to go to job interviews because they have no money to get there or to buy the shirt and trousers that they need to feel presentable when attending interviews.

‘The vast majority of people on Job Seekers Allowance understand they have to look for employment to gain their benefit, however the Tories seem to be looking for every and any way to hinder instead of help people into work. Scotland is a rich country; we should not be treating our citizens in such a way. We can and will do a better job with the full powers of independence.”