Over at the Daily Blog Mike Treen has a post entitled "Benefit cuts designed to help cut wages as well." There is a distinct lack of balance and I've left some corrections in a comment (now published).
Treen "The unemployment benefit was cut by 25% for young people, 20% for young sickness beneficiaries, and 17% for solo parents. "
DPB was cut 10.7% with one child; 8.9% with two children. The only sole parents who received a cut of 16.7% were those without dependent children.
Treen "They abolished the family benefit and made many workers ineligible for the unemployment benefit with a stand down period of up to a six months.......Universal entitlements like the family benefit were eliminated so assistance could be targeted to the deserving more accurately."
The universal Family Benefit was abolished but half was reallocated to into Family Support which went to beneficiary families with children. In other words the money was better targeted and made up some of the money lost through cuts to basic rates.
The six month stand down applied to people who had become voluntarily unemployed or had a redundancy payment.
Treen "Unemployment benefits were stopped for 16 and 17 year-olds and the youth rate for 18 & 19 year-olds extended to the age of 25."
The Independent Youth Benefit was created instead.
Source: Social Developments, Tim Garlick, p146,7.