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Universal Credit implications for long-term SAHMs??? Help please!

(803 Posts)
CSLewis Fri 01-Feb-13 09:39:21

Hi, I've just read the Mumsnet summary about Universal Credit, and read that parents of children aged 5-13 will be required to seek work during school hours, though I think those with a baby under one may be exempt.

Does anyone have any further details about this? It feels to me that a parent of young (primary-aged) children is being forced to return to the job market, regardless of whether they judge it to be in the best interests of their family hmm

Chubfuddler Sat 09-Feb-13 03:02:07

Without wanting to come over all Xenia, the way to get school hours part time work in my experience is to he really, really good at your job so that when you go on maternity leave for the second time and your eldest is coming up to school age, your employer agrees to cutting your hours rather than risk losing you. Not drop out of employment for five + years then cast desperately about for a convenient "mummy job".

MerryCouthyMows Sat 09-Feb-13 03:20:34

Saladcream - you would hate me then. I am on Income Support and have an iPhone.

I am on income support because I am a lone parent with 4 DC's. Three of them are disabled. I am also disabled. There is NO childcare for two of my DC's (an autistic 14yo and a 2yo with multiple life threatening allergies that every Nursery, preschool and childminder in my entire town has refused to be responsible for the risk to his health). Childcare for my third DC with SN's would cost at least double standard childcare.

I get DLA for my disabilities.

Why do I have an iPhone? Because my mobile is my only phone (no house phone as I would have to pay a £300 deposit as I'm unemployed), and on Pay as you go, I was spending £75-£80 a month phoning 0845 numbers. (Will explain that in a minute)

My phone broke. I didn't have any spare money to buy a new phone at that point, as it was only a few weeks after my ex had left me. My phone company offered me an iPhone for nothing, plus 3 months free usage, if I got a pay monthly iPhone. I now make MORE 0845 phonecalls, yet never spend more than £45 a month, with it being down to £36 on a good month.

All the consultants my DC's see, and I see, are based on 0845 numbers, as my hospital's switchboard is an 0845 number.

All benefit helpline numbers are 0845 numbers.

All my utility companies are 0845 numbers.

My Housing Association repairs team is an 0845 number. As is their helpline that I have to report my neighbour's ASB to.

I could go on.

Plus my iPhone enables me to do my shopping online, set reminders for my medications, carry my diary in my pocket so that I don't double book DD's medical appointments with mine, or DS2's with DS3's.

I have an iPhone and I'm on income support. SFW. It actually SAVES me money. Therefore I guess, in your eyes, it saves YOU money.

MerryCouthyMows Sat 09-Feb-13 03:22:13

Saladcream - I'll swap you your DS's health and your health for my iPhone. I know which I'd rather my family had...

wannabedomesticgoddess Sat 09-Feb-13 04:52:46

Why are you all on here judging and berating each other when the real problem lies with the government, businesses and the economy? They are baiting us against each other and people are falling for it.

There arent even enough jobs for one partner in every family to go to work, let alone two.

Businesses are paying ridiculously low wages. No one can be expected to meet the cost of high rents, high bills and childcare on the typical wages.

We need people to have children, otherwise there will be no workforce to support us in old age. Since when did having children become a privilege only open to the rich?

The fact is, SAHMs will be forced out to work to pay most of their salary in childcare fees, so nurseries can up numbers but keep fees the same and still pay their staff a pittance. All this is going to do is put more money in the pockets of the rich, while everyone works for nothing and gets to see their kids for an hour a day. It wont help families and it wont help the kids.

JakeBullet Sat 09-Feb-13 06:43:27

Saladcream.....I can almost echo Merrtmouthycow's post.

I only have one DC but he is autistic and has many challenges and difficulties. Prior to March 2012 I worked for 30 years (am quite old really). I have an iPhone 4 which I got while in work and is paid for.....but you wouldn't know that if you were stood behind me watching me tick the box for free prescriptions. Instead you'd be making a cats bum mouth and judging me.

Not sure how old you are but am betting I was paying taxes while you were still in school and benefitting from them.

How about remembering that everyone has a story before judging them for daring to be poor while owning an IPhone.

I am sick of people judging me without knowing anything about me.

In a way though I don't blame them....this Govt has done a good job of demonising everyone who needs to claim anything. The papers are full of it, the TV is full of it......not surprising really that those who are too dim to see through it judge people like me who have worked all our lives.

saladcreamwitheverything Sat 09-Feb-13 08:00:45

Can you read my post upthread about benefits system existing for those who need it not a life style choice before I get flamed for being anti-disability???

For the record, I don't HATE anybody.

These threads always turn out the same.

Don't worry, i've learnt my lesson. You've won. I'll keep my gob shut.
<leaves thread and continues to be a silent seething lurker>

wannabedomesticgoddess Sat 09-Feb-13 08:08:48

But why are you seething and bitter at people just trying to get by salad?

People put their families first and do what they have to do to keep a roof over their heads. You cant blame someone for worrying about their own existence before they think of the bigger picture. Thats just human nature.

And your bitterness will hurt no one but yourself in the end.

aftermay Sat 09-Feb-13 08:28:59

Wannabe - regarding there not being enough jobs. Someone said up thread that they wouldn't want crappy jobs. Which is then at odds with you saying they'd do anything to keep a roof over their heads. It's all complicated.

I agree with you, however, about how divisive the whole issue is.

JakeBullet Sat 09-Feb-13 08:36:35

I am not accusing you of being anti disability saladcream,in fact I am as sure as I can be you are not. I am just pointing out that everyone has a story. If you were behind me in the chemist the likelihood is I would not have my son but I would have my phone with me in case the school needs me. It might be me you see answering my phone while ticking the income support box......which you have already said you make a judgement about.

As for UC, I will get this for a while until I can go back to work properly, I am already about to start a part time job.....I don't want to be a burden on society but I do want to be treated fairly and for people not to necessarily judge me because I have something they think I shouldn't. I also have a flat screen TV....again bought in good times and I pray it lasts the distance because no way can I afford to replace it.

wannabedomesticgoddess Sat 09-Feb-13 08:37:35

When someone says crappy I take it to mean so poorly paid that you wouldnt be able to afford to work. Which is possible. But again, whos fault? Should Joe Bloggs risk being made homeless but feel ok about that because atleast hes working?

As it happens, there is a cleaning job in my town for 10 hours a week which I cant apply for because it requires a cleaning qualification. hmm

I dont even get replies to my job applications. DP is the same. He was supposed to be starting a job on Monday, but isnt now because the JC found the employer someone who had been on JSA longer and was on a scheme. So that person is cheaper.

Crappy jobs? Where are they? We will do them.

LabelsGalore Sat 09-Feb-13 08:48:18

My issue here are two folds;
1- where are the jobs? With the level of unemployment that we have atm, I can't see how asking more people to find a job is going to work....
2- what about childcare? the cost of childcare is such that if you have to accept whatever job is given to you, it is quite possible that it will NOT cover the cost of childcare. In that case what is the point?

Completely agree that the system is such that it will push people into not claiming UC.
Unfortunately, it will also stop people trying to develop their own business and will put the poorest of us in an unsustainable position (eg having to switch job on a regular basis depending on what the 'job center' will find them with all the issues with childcare etc...).
I do have a BIG issue with the fact that all people receiving UC (or WTC ...) have their 'lifestyle' subsidised. It seems to be so far from the truth....

aftermay Sat 09-Feb-13 08:55:58

Actually I agree with lots of the posts on here. The subsidised 'lifestyle' choice I think is used because of idiotic pronouncements about what mothers should be doing, i.e. staying at home and breast feeding. That makes it sound like a lifestyle choice rather than necessity, needs must etc.

As with everything, choosing your words and trying to see the other side would lead to more understanding.

Good luck with looking for jobs. BIL is in this situation at the moment.

gaelicsheep Sat 09-Feb-13 09:50:12

Yes by crappy job I meant a dead end job with no training or prospects that does not cover the costs of childcare and associated expenses. That is a lose lose for parent and child.
For the record I'm a WOHM.

gaelicsheep Sat 09-Feb-13 09:56:56

And I breastfed while working full time. I've no axe to grind here. I have a DH who stays at home with our toddler. It is choice we have made, it is funded entirely from my salary with a few hundred quid CTC a year and our family income, despite my good job,is considerably below average. If my DH took one of the jobs available locally (which are like hen's teeth) we would we financially worse off.

HappyMummyOfOne Sat 09-Feb-13 13:28:38

"I propose that those two income households where the second income pays for childcare with money to spare for holidays etc give up one of the jobs to free it up for someone who is being forced to find one or starve. Sounds fair?"

Why should they? People work for many reasons not just financial. Working should bring the nice things in life as well as the essentials hence children fare better when growing up with a good work ethic installed.

If somebody is now being forced to find work under the new UC system then they should thank their lucky stars that their choice of being a SAHP was funded at all in the first place. Children are the responsibilty of the parent/s not the state, welfare should only kick in as a safety net not a lifestyle choice.

Theres nothing wrong with suggesting people should only have children that they can afford and its nothing like extras like sky. Children are costly so come with a huge financial commitment. If people cant afford to have them, then they change their lifestyle, take extra hours etc until they can rather than believe its their right and that the state should pay for that choice.

wannabedomesticgoddess Sat 09-Feb-13 13:30:51

Tax credits are boosting low wages.

Make the businesses pay fairer wages and then maybe the state wouldnt have to pay.

JakeBullet Sat 09-Feb-13 13:37:35

Only the rich should have children, everyone else should have implants innit? angry

What about those who lose jobs after planning for their children?

What about those who cannot find work after these changes kick in?

nkf Sat 09-Feb-13 13:42:02

My understanding is that you can be a stay at home mother until your youngest turns 60. Unless... you are claiming a benefit of some kind.

wannabedomesticgoddess Sat 09-Feb-13 13:52:29

I love how rich people dont have to have a work ethic.

Work is about more than money? Well then why isnt every SAHM working? Even the ones who dont claim benefits. Contribute to society ffs.

nkf Sat 09-Feb-13 13:54:21

Is it the case that tax credits allow employers to pay less? I can understand that it might work like that but does it really? There is so much myth around benefits.

aftermay Sat 09-Feb-13 14:00:50

nfk - ok, so the changes are not too bad if you can SAH till your youngest turns 60 smile

wannabedomesticgoddess Sat 09-Feb-13 14:01:05

The government knows NMW isnt enough to survive on. Hence tax credits. Presumably because employers would kick up a fuss if NMW wage raised to a level which enabled people to live without tax credits.

nkf Sat 09-Feb-13 14:04:12

But people who aren't on minimum wage also get tax credits. I can't help wondering if the prices of things would fall if there was less support. For example, I know someone who gets housing benefit. Her rent is very high. Ultimately, who benefits from that? The house owner surely. Perhaps he can only charge such a high rent because of housing benefit.

aftermay Sat 09-Feb-13 14:04:46

Oh, but think of Business. And The City. Can't be pissing them off.

wannabedomesticgoddess Sat 09-Feb-13 14:12:02

Well yes. Its landlords too. And energy companies. And childcare providers.

In my local private nursery they were advertising for staff who had to have NVQ level 3, paed first aid, food hygiene, and another one I cant remember.

Pay? NMW.

So go to college, get your qualifications, try to better your life. But we wont pay to reflect that.

The profits go to big bosses (in that nurserys case, a multimillionaire) and the government have to top up wages to an acceptable level.

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