Wales: A Work in Progress: Social Security Spotlight


October 26


11:00 am - 12:00 pm

Click to Register:

Institute of Welsh Affairs (IWA)

Our series of events will explore the key debates around the constitutional and democratic future of Wales.

Is the social security and welfare net failing low-and-middle income households in Wales?

Devolution arrangements across the UK differ significantly on the matter of social security and welfare. Scotland, in particular, is an example of a nation in the UK with a significantly larger package of powers devolved in this area compared to Wales. The Scottish Child Payment, a new devolved benefit, is particularly pertinent in this discussion, displaying different ways of managing welfare spend.

In Wales, the majority of social security benefits are administered by the UK Government. Yet, social security touches on a wide range of devolved policy areas like housing, health and social care, education and skills. We will examine how well the current system is working in Wales, what the case is for change and what we can learn from the Scottish experience of the devolution of welfare benefits.

In this conversation we will be addressing whether the powers that Wales has over welfare and social security are delivering for people on low-and-middle incomes.

To examine the Scottish case, we will be joined by Mairi Spowage, Director of the Fraser of Allander Institute at the University of Strathclyde. Mairi also sits as an Expert Panel Member of the Independent Commission on the Constitutional Future of Wales. We will also have responses and interventions from Welsh stakeholders.

We will look at:

  • How well the social security system in Wales is functioning
  • What can Wales learn from Scotland’s devolution journey in this area?
  • How effective are the current Welsh Government grants and payments?
  • What a fit-for-purpose benefits system in Wales looks like
  • What this all means for the case for constitutional change

This discussion is part of the IWA’s Wales: A Work in Progress series. The IWA’s Constitutional Future Project is supported by the Legal Education Foundation.

If you would like to submit a question to Mairi ahead of the event, please do so at [email protected].