Non-Take-Up of Minimum Income Schemes is a real problem

While much has been made in the media of the issue of over-take-up (or fraud) in relation to benefit schemes, little has been heard about the question of non-take-up. This is all the more surprising since conservative estimates show rates of above 40% of non-take-up for most categories of social benefits.  This shows a very different picture than the one so often presented by some politicians and popular media of lazy welfare recipients spending their time calculating how to get the most out of the welfare system. Two important new reports by FEANTSA and EUROFOUND try to address this reality. 

 FEANTSA (the European Network of homeless service providers) as part of the European Minimum Income Network project, has produced a thematic study on “take up of minimum income by vulnerable groups, in particular homeless people”. In this report based on the work of Odenore (Observatoire DEs NOn-REcours aux droits et services, IEP Grenoble, France)  they present an important typology for understanding non-take-up in terms of: unknown, unclaimed, unobtained, and confiscated rights. They also show how with political will progress cna be made in the access of these rights.
Is Non-Take-Up a problem? A working paper of EUROFOUND on access to benefits in times of crisis outlines 11 convincing arguments why non-take-up is a problem.  They also review the latest literature on non-take-up and present the available figures. In addition they present mechanisms for discussion that could contribute to increasing the gap in non-take-up.
Access the FEANTSA Report here
Access the Eurofound working paper here

 

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