Third Class Rating for Welfare Reforms: Mike Tomlinson responds to the Welfare Reform Bill

On 27 February 2012, Owen Patterson MP, Secretary of State for Northern Ireland debated the Welfare Reform Bill at Queen’s University, Belfast. Mike Tomlinson, Head of the School of Sociology, Social Policy and Social Work was the respondent and in his response he argues that the reform delivers £18 billion in cuts across the UK (£600m in Northern Ireland) while aligning the benefits and tax credit systems to a more unpredictable and flexible labour market. But it fails at perhaps the biggest challenge of all – rebalancing the rewards for work from the richest to the low paid.