How did people survive before wftc, ctc etc?

(169 Posts)

Just wondering how people survived before working benefits?

Orwellian Thu 28-Feb-13 22:19:11

We have a catch-22 situation because of tax credits (and housing benefit to a certain extent).

Tax credits were introduced to subsidise low wages and buy votes, so companies decided that they didn't need to pay good wages anymore since workers got subsidised by the state via tax credits and would pay the shortfall. Tax credits bumped up the incomes of those on a low income so they had more to spend and in turn, companies selling goods and utilities raised their prices knowing everyone was either earning a salary or being subsidised via tax credits so could afford to pay more. Because of this tax credits are needed to fund the shortfall in the difference between living costs and the increasing cost of goods. Rinse and repeat.

nickelbabe Sat 23-Feb-13 11:30:33

obviously not never - i mean in my lifetime.

nickelbabe Sat 23-Feb-13 11:30:12

oh, that's very true, Cogito - and the fact that there's free trade/movement across Europe doesn't help - lots of people will go for a cheaper job and can get it. students or people who haven't yet got families will go after those cheap jobs.
so there are several people after the same job.

There's never been a surplus of jobs to require wages to be higher.

CogitoErgoSometimes Sat 23-Feb-13 10:17:12

"a business is only able to pay out what it can pay out."

That's only part of it. The other truth is that we've got a surplus of workers at the moment. It's a 'buyers' market' and has been for a long time. If there are a thousand people applying for a job in a coffee-shop, the coffee-shop owner has no reason to offer a high wage. If three coffee-shops were chasing one unemployed person the shop offering the most attractive wage would win. Union membership for private sector employees has declined so there is no collective bargaining power either.

nickelbabe Fri 22-Feb-13 22:14:09

sad darkest

gaelicsheep Fri 22-Feb-13 21:02:02

OptimisticPessimist - that is a brilliant idea and I wish it would happen that way.

There are so many double standards on this thread it is almost (not quite) unbelievable.

MerryCouthyMows Fri 22-Feb-13 18:33:46

OptimisticPessimist - now THAT is one of the most sensible solutions to this that I have read on MN.

When it is an OVERT business subsidy, instead of a covert one, I'm quite sure most people will see it differently!

Darkesteyes Fri 22-Feb-13 17:51:30

Agree with couthy totally.

nickel since you mentioned care workers ending up on the dole i thought you might like to see what appeared in my twitter feed last night.
Apparently now they are being made to do workfare in homes for vulnerable adults while claiming said dole.

twitpic.com/c5lswd

2old2beamum Fri 22-Feb-13 16:41:51

Merry brilliant post, my feelings exactly.smile

nickelbabe Fri 22-Feb-13 16:14:10

that's a good idea actually - rather like the workfare scheme, but actually fair. and more likely to result in a skill being obtained.

OptimisticPessimist Fri 22-Feb-13 16:08:20

Good posts Couthy.

I wonder, given that WTC is a business subsidy as discussed, perhaps the solution is to introduce (in conjunction with abolishing WTC and increasing the NMW) a small business subsidy by which small business could apply for a wage subsidy towards the costs of employing staff. That way small businesses such as Nickel's continue to trade, offer services, employ staff etc, Tesco et al. have to pay the full cost of their staff and the stigma of subsidy is moved from low income staff to businesses? <thinking out loud>

Very well said Merry!!! I agree with your whole post smile

MerryCouthyMows Fri 22-Feb-13 16:02:51

'Tax Credits' are two totally separate things.

You have CHILD tax credits, that are paid to cover the cost of raising a child if you are unemployed or on a low wage.

And you have WORKING tax credits. Which are paid to low paid employees to bring their wage up to a liveable amount. This subsidising the wage bill of businesses.

WTC should be abolished, IMO. BUT IN CONJUNCTION WITH raising NMW to include that amount.

CTC is a different story.

CTC is paid to those in low paid employment that have DC's, AND to those out of work.

Without that, a huge swathe of society would just be permanently unable to have ANY DC's, EVER. Because they would NEVER have 'enough money' to support them without assistance.

To go to those limits, and say that ONLY those that can provide for their DC's without assistance can have them, is pushing desperately close to erm...trying not to say the word that immediately springs to my mind...Social cleansing?

In 30 years time, who is going to DO those low paid jobs if the 'hoi-polloi' that have to claim CTC to bring up their DC's don't have any DC's?

The DC's of the middle class?

Yeah, right. Because all you aspire to for your DC's is shelf stacking?!

Pull the other one.

Someone will still have to do those jobs!

Yes, those that are physically able to work, should. But there's NOT enough jobs for them all, regardless of what the Media propoganda says. And there's not enough childcare for them even if there WAS enough jobs.

Add to that the distortion of the lower end of the job market by Workfare, and it all adds up to the fact that CTC is necessary right now, until employers pay a living wage AND housing costs come down.

And as for bringing DLA into it...words fail me.

DLA is paid in respect of DISABILITIES. It is to enable people with disabilities to cover the additional costs incurred through their disabilities, regardless of whether they are employed, unemployed, or spotty green Martians with disabilities!

What reasons do you have for pointing out that somebody might receive 'more money' if they claim DLA, with such a disparaging tone?

Let's not forget that one Mr. D. Cameron claimed DLA in respect of his son's disabilities, despite being a millionaire.

If HE felt the need to claim DLA to cover the additional costs incurred through his son's disability, despite all that money, how do you think someone that is unemployed, or they or their partner work in a NMW job and they have a DC with disabilities cope financially?

If David Cameron couldn't look after his disabled son without recourse to public funds through DLA, despite his healthy bank balance, how can somebody that lives hand to mouth on benefits or in a NMW job be expected to?!

HellesBelles396 Fri 22-Feb-13 15:15:25

HMOO you are throwing around prejudices like fact.

when I had my son, my xh worked full time, I worked pt and studied. xh changed and it was unsafe to live with him - not something I could reasonably foreseen.

I work ft and have done since becoming single. what is it about what I've said that makes you think I'm feckless and lazy? and I'm not in the minority amongst people on tc's.

what you're peddling there is trash-talk put out by those who want to suggest that reducing benefits for those who work is a good thing. my salary was a living wage but has only increased by 1% since 2006. now, I struggle to pay the bills each month - all of which have increased - some have doubled.

HappyMummyOfOne Fri 22-Feb-13 15:00:53

"People are complaining about those in receipt of TC's, without seeing them for what they REALLY are, a business subsidy to prop up unviable small businesses by paying part of their wage bill, and to prop up the profits of larger businesses by paying part of their wage bill, this increasing their profits.

TC's are a business subsidy. Just because they are PAID to the employee, it doesn't make that any LESS TRUE."

Tax credits are paid to people who dont work and may neve have worked so how can they be propping up businesses?

WTC is paid to workers not businesses but its capped quite low so the majority of people who qualify either work part time or have a two adult house where both dont work full time. Now that is the choice of the person, many choose to work the magic 16 hours as they know they can still have the same income via tax credits as a full time worker. Thats not the businesses fault. Partly the governmets fault at the time for allowing people to do it but mostly the individuals responsibility for choosing it.

At least with UC the minimum hours are far stricter as they should be. Part time work or being a SAHP are luxuries, lovely if the household income can support them but not something other tax payers should be paying for.

The thing is with a lot of these NMW jobs is that they are the jobs that have to be done and can't be outsourced to India or replaced with a machine. So people have to take these jobs, and therefore they should be properly paid for doing so.

sydlexic Fri 22-Feb-13 14:53:07

What about a business owned by investors on The Times rich list, that provides leisure to the rich and pays NMW because they know they can get away with it. The employees do not bother to ask for more money as they would gain nothing.

HappyMummyOfOne Fri 22-Feb-13 14:52:06

Forcing employers to pay people more wont work for many, smaller businesses wont cope with the costs and larger ones will simply stop employing people. Some jobs pay little as they need no qualifications or skills. Lots of people will still do NMW work like students and those who already have a salary in the home and want to work for extras.

If you look at the benefits site, you will see they are set at decent levels. If a child gets rickets through not eating properly then that is down to the parent/s not the government. If they were so low people could not eat then there would have been no need to for the new ruling of capping benefits to £500 a week. A quick look at the benefits site and they are very decent, its only the single people on JSA that get the bare minimum. Those with a few children can net far more than than a person working 40 hours a week easily when you add up HB, CTB, IS, CB, CTC and theres all the free extras like school meals, prescriptions, school trips etc. If DLA is claimed then that income rises even higher.

People are very quick to blame the government rather than themselves. If you have children then you know that financially you need to be able to cover them both at the time of conceiving and in the future when circumstances may be very different. People no longer wait until they have a decent job, a little savings behind them and are in a long stable relationship.

Nobody knows what is around the corner and benefits should be there to support those short term between job losses or for those truly unable to work due to disability but society needs to play its part too and to self support where possible rather than have numerous children or live in areas that they cannot afford themselves. Those that dont claim state assitance have to live where they can afford and limit the number of children they have so it should be the same for all.

nickelbabe Fri 22-Feb-13 14:42:03

and you've got to think that a lot of small/medium businesses have been screwed over plenty by the government, so they're being forced into that position.

big companies get everything they can wish for - they're given all sorts of tax breaks and can afford clever accountants. small/medium businesses can't, so they have to play by the rules and get screwed for it.
It's partly the government's fault that so many businesses fail.

nickelbabe Fri 22-Feb-13 14:40:11

it's not the company's fault that a living wage is so high. that life is too expensive these days.

nickelbabe Fri 22-Feb-13 14:39:34

Because those businesses are giving people jobs.
and providing services.
without them, there would be more people on the dole and fewer services.

MerryCouthyMows Fri 22-Feb-13 14:34:15

People are complaining about those in receipt of TC's, without seeing them for what they REALLY are, a business subsidy to prop up unviable small businesses by paying part of their wage bill, and to prop up the profits of larger businesses by paying part of their wage bill, this increasing their profits.

TC's are a business subsidy. Just because they are PAID to the employee, it doesn't make that any LESS TRUE.

MerryCouthyMows Fri 22-Feb-13 14:26:55

Why should the Government (and by default the taxpayer) be responsible for propping up unviable small businesses by paying part of their wage bill for them, in the form of WTC?

MerryCouthyMows Fri 22-Feb-13 14:25:25

But if the 'company can only afford to pay out what it can afford to pay out', and it can't afford to pay out a living wage, then it IS an unviable business that is being propped up by the taxpayer in the form of WTC!

daisydoodoo Fri 22-Feb-13 14:18:18

Not everyone can work in the jobs that pay well. it does not mean that they made poor life choices at all. I'm thinking of my sister who has learnign difficulties, she would not be able to work in a job that paid a high wage as shes not mentally capable. She does however work three jobs, two cleaning jobs and a shop warehouse. all minimum wage and all part time which make up to 28 hours a week.

Its ludicrous to suggest that just because you are a cleaner, school dinner lady or work at Asda that you made poor life choices. Not at all, they will on the whole be people working hard to support thier families as best as they can. 15 years ago those working in minimum wage jobs could probably have afforded rent with very little help, but you just couldnt do that today.

I live in the South East and rents are high, but if i moved eslewhere i wouldnt have a job to pay my rent. This is the same for someone like myself who earns enough to pay my own bills or for someone who relies on tax credits and housing top ups to make ends meet.

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