The Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) is once again facing the prospect of a UN investigation. Because the UN has just received a swathe of complaints about the DWP.

The DWP: facing the UN again

As The Canary‘s Tracy Keeling reported in June:

The UN has launched an almighty investigation into the Conservative government… The UN’s special rapporteur on extreme poverty and human rights, Prof Philip Alston, will lead an inquiry on the impact of the government’s austerity policies over the last eight years…

Alston will embark on a fact-finding mission to the UK in the autumn…

The probe will be the UN’s first in a western European country in over half a decade.

Alston will visit the UK from 5-16 November. So he laid out specific areas on which he wanted submissions to focus (you can read them here). Of the 30 topics and questions covered, 10 related to welfare; five of those being Universal Credit. Many of the submissions focused on these.


But they also show that many think welfare is key to UK poverty and human rights violations. Because over half the submissions built the DWP into their evidence

The case is particularly sensitive because the Chequers plan involved UK officials collecting VAT on goods travelling through Britain on the EU’s behalf after Brexit and passing on the revenue to Brussels. The EU has ruled out “outsourcing” EU duties collection to Britain.

The EU legal action was expected last week but was pulled to spare Mrs May’s blushes. The prime minister was about to address EU-27 leaders in Salzburg to try and sell Chequers but those efforts failed in spectacular fashion.

Mrs May declared that the Brexit talks were at “an impasse” on Friday before today’s announcement of the commission’s final warning.

“The United Kingdom is liable for the financial consequences of its infringements of EU legislation,” the commission said on Monday. Britain was breaking EU law by not making the customs duties available to the EU budget, it added.

The UK argues that using the average EU clothing price to calculate the lost customs is not fair because clothes are cheaper in Britain and so the duties due would be less.

Take your case to to (or contact)



The Charter contains some 54 articles divided into seven titles. The first six titles deal with substantive rights under the headings: dignity, freedoms, equality, solidarity, citizens’ rights and justice, while the last title deals with the interpretation and application of the Charter. Much of Charter is based on the European Convention on Human Rights (ECHR), European Social Charter, the case-law of the European Court of Justice and pre-existing provisions of European Union law.

BRITAIN UNDER THE violating many of our rights under European charters





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