What, if anything, can be done about Benefit Sanctions?

  • Michael Adler
Part of the Palgrave Socio-Legal Studies book series (PSLS)


This chapter reviews three recent reports on benefit sanctions, by the House of Commons Work and Pensions Select Committee in 2015, by the National Audit Office in 2016, and by the House of Commons Public Accounts Select Committee in 2017, and outlines ten proposals for addressing the injustice associated with them and ameliorating the hardship they cause. It also considers the possibility of incorporating the European Social Charter, in much the same way that the European Convention on Human Rights has been incorporated in the Human Rights Act 1998. In the event that none of these measures are taken up, the chapter concludes by briefly considering an alternative to a social security system based on conditionality, namely a basic income scheme.


Select Committees National Audit Office Proposals for reform European Social Charter Incorporation Basic income 


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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.School of Social and Political ScienceUniversity of EdinburghEdinburghUK

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