Benefits in Wales: options for better delivery

The Equality, Local Government and Communities Committee undertook an inquiry into benefits in Wales: options for better delivery.

Terms of reference

The terms of reference for the inquiry were to examine:

*         arguments for and against the devolution of welfare benefits;

*         lessons learned from the devolution of some social security powers to Scotland;

*         options for different forms of devolution (i.e. Universal Credit flexibilities, the devolution of specific benefits, the ability to create new benefits etc.);

*         practical considerations of devolution (i.e. the financial implications, integration of devolved and non-devolved systems, delivery infrastructure etc.); and

*         the principles that could underpin the delivery of benefits in Wales.

Evidence gathering

The Committee held a number of evidence sessions to inform the work of the Committee, which can be viewed in the table below. Additionally, the Committee consulted on this topic. The consultation responses have been published.

Evidence session

Date, agenda, minutes



1.Guto Ifan, Wales Governance Centre

Cian Sion, Wales Governance Centre

19 June 2019


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2 Victoria Winckler, Bevan Foundation

19 June 2019


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3 Gareth Morgan, Welfare Rights Advisers Cymru

Susan Lloyd-Selby, Trussell Trust

27 June 2019


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4 Matthew Kennedy, Chartered Institute of Housing Cymru

Sam Lister, Chartered Institute of Housing Cymru

Will Atkinson, Community Housing Cymru

27 June 2019


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5 Rachel Cable, Oxfam Cymru

Samia Mohamed

27 June 2019


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6 Hannah Blythyn AM, Deputy Minister for Housing and Local Government

Jo-Anne Daniels, Welsh Government

Linda Davis, Welsh Government

3 July 2019


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The Committee published its report: Benefits in Wales - options for better delivery (PDF, 1MB) on 24 October 2019.

On publication of the report, John Griffiths MS, Chair of the Committee said:

“The current system is currently not working for far too many people. We repeatedly hear that  benefits are not enough to cover basic and essential household costs, and the  system does not treat people with dignity, fairness or compassion. The human cost of these failures is unacceptable, in one of the world’s largest national economies.”

The Welsh Government laid its response (PDF, 327KB) to the report on 6 December 2019.

Following the publication of a report by the Wales Centre for Public Policy, the Welsh Government updated their response (PDF, 452KB) to the Committee’s report.

The report and government responses were debated in Plenary on 16 September 2020.

Keeping in touch

If you'd like to know more about the work of the Equality, Local Government and Communities, please view its homepage, follow its Twitter account or contact the team that supports the Committee at

Business type: Committee Inquiry

Status: For consideration

First published: 21/02/2019





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