The Scottish National Party (SNP) has won a by-election held on Thursday for North Ayrshire Council.
Grace McLean retained the North Coast and Cumbraes ward for the SNP with 2,021 votes.
Independent Drew Cochrane was second with 1,190, Conservative Toni Dawson came third with 1,125, followed by Labour's Valerie Reid on 691 and UKIP's Meilan Henderson on 192.
The by-election was held following the death of SNP councillor Alex McLean.
A single mother has won a benefits fight with her local council from beyond the grave.
Sarah Stirling began legal action against the London Borough of Haringey early last year, saying the authority's consultation on a council tax reduction scheme was flawed.
She lost fights in the High Court and the Court of Appeal, then became ill and died before the Supreme Court had given its verdict. Full story here
In East Ayrshire as at May 2014, there were 16 households subject to the cap.
North East 1,122 North West 3,199 Yorkshire and The Humber 2,345 East Midlands 1,791 West Midlands 3,401 East of England 2,905 London 21,233 South East 4,667 South West 1,905... [Read More]
Universal credit is a disaster, yet IDS is rolling it out across the UK despite claims from insiders that the system is flawed, I.T. cannot cope with anything other than the simplest of cases and training for staff is almost non existent. One of the problems with UC for local authorities is the payment of rent direct to tenants, fears of rent arrears due to sanctions and or tenants who refuse to pass on the rent to their landlord.
Yet today we learn that NI has secured changes to the way Universal Credit can be paid to protect the most vulnerable in its society by direct payments as is the current position under HB and twice monthly payments of UC to claimants, the intention is only one payment a month. Many campaigners have stated that for many a once a month payment will be difficult. The Scottish Government must move to ensure the same changes will apply to Scottish... [Read More]
24 Oct 2014, by Richard Exell in Society & Welfare
At the start of the year I realised I was losing track of all the social security cuts that have been made over the past four years, so I started some research that ended up as a report, Keeping Up With The Cuts. I found that, even if I excluded small cuts, pensions cuts, cuts made by local authorities when local provision has been devolved and changes linked to new employment schemes like the Work Programme I still had a list of 43 cuts and ‘reforms’ that reduce claimants’ entitlements.
Up to 225 children under the age of ten have been treated for alcohol-related injuries or illness in Scotland in the last three years, new figures show.
NHS Ayrshire and Arran was the worst affected health board area, with 86 under-tens treated between 2011 and 2013, followed by NHS Tayside with 61 cases and NHS Forth Valley with 33.
The numbers soared in the age group ten to 18, with a total of 4884 young people treated for an alcohol-related condition over the same period.
NHS Ayrshire and Arran again had the highest incidence, with 1483 cases recorded, followed by NHS Tayside with 1385 and NHS Forth Valley with 612.
JUST at the moment, Lord Smith of Kelvin is a busy man. To him falls the hellish task of herding the alley cats of party politics. Somehow the peer must persuade them to agree a scheme for further devolution, and do so before November ends. Good luck, as they say, with that.
It ought to be impossible. The Westminster parties had months and years to do the job and didn't bother. In fact, Labour, Conservatives and Liberal Democrats went into the last stretch of the referendum campaign refusing to produce a joint proposition to enlighten those liable to vote No. Quite an oversight.
Dear Prime Minister,
Your Minister for Welfare Reform has said that he believes some disabled people are “not worth the full wage”. Despite outrage on all benches, including from senior Conservatives, and from charity leaders, you have failed to act.
Lord Freud’s remarks were completely unacceptable, and it is also unacceptable that someone with these views remains in charge of such an important post in your government.
It is now vital that you publicly confront the following issues.
After learning of the comments, your spokesman said you would “want to hear what Lord Freud is going to say”. Can you confirm that you have personally not spoken to Lord Freud to discuss his views, and yet you have given him a clean bill of health?
Lord Freud said in relation to disabled people being paid less than the national minimum wage that he was “going to... [Read More]
The map indicated that one in three youngsters in Glasgow were living in hardship, putting the city just outside the 20 worst local authorities in the UK. In another five Scottish council areas, the figures suggested more than a quarter of all children were growing up in families that were struggling to get by. They were identified as Clackmannanshire, Dundee, East Ayrshire, Inverclyde and North Ayrshire. Read full article here