Lost for words. Another job advert!

These are strange times. Here’s another job advert in GM. Clearly, we’re going to have to clamp down on this sort of thing 🙂

As ever you’ll be able to find a copy of this on our permanent Job Vacancies page.


Job Title:

Welfare Benefit Advisor
Reference Number: JIG-061


Turner House, Leigh


£31,652 – £35,218 per annum

Salary Band I



35 flexible hours per week between the hours of 7.00am & 7.00pm, Monday to Friday


36 compressed hours per week between the hours of 7.00am & 7.00pm over 4 days.


Who we are: Jigsaw Homes Group was created on 3rd April 2018 following the merger of New Charter Group and Adactus Housing Group. Jigsaw is now one of the largest housing groups in England with more than 33,000 homes across the North West and East Midlands, employing over 1400 employees. Our main social purpose is to provide quality homes as solid foundations for people to thrive for the rest of their lives.


About the department: The department is a highly skilled and effective team. It strives to deliver a financial service which aims to meet the current and future needs of the business. The team is committed to the organisations aims and objectives and as such work in a fast moving and exciting environment.


Role Information: The successful candidate will assist residents to maximise their incomes and provide them with advice, support and assistance to enhance their financial circumstances and well being.


Jigsaw Benefits: In return Jigsaw Homes Group offer 24 working days holiday per annum (rising with extended service and additional leave given for the Christmas closure), occupational sick pay, flexible working, on-site gyms, access to the Social Housing Pension Scheme, Simply Health membership, enhanced maternity/paternity leave and training/development opportunities.


Closing Date: 12.00 noon, Monday 22 April 2019


Application Instructions If you would like an application form and information pack please contact us either via our recruitment line on 01942 604 292 or by email to HR@adactushousing.co.uk or apply on-line at our website www.jigsawhomes.org.uk/vacancies Please note you must apply via our application form, we do not accept CV’s.


What do you think this is? A jobs web site? Oh, er…

GMWRAG could get used to this. Yes, more job vacancies…

Salford City Council
Salford Civic Centre
Chorley Road
Swinton, M27 5AW

Welfare Rights Officer (Health)
2 Posts:
– Full time (36 hours), Permanent
– Part time (18 hours), Fixed term (to September 1st 2019 in first instance)
Grade: 3B, £26,999 – £29,636(full time)/£13,499 – £14,818 (part time)
Closing date: 30th of April, 12pm
Entitlement to a casual car user allowance

We are looking for an experienced welfare rights officer to join our dynamic and well established welfare rights and debt advice team.

This post provides a comprehensive specialist welfare benefits advice service in GP practices and health centres.

Key responsibilities will include:
• Providing an advice service in a variety of health settings and home visits
• Duty cover of our telephone and email welfare rights advice service
• Contributing to welfare rights training delivery
• Acting as an expert consultant and providing support for GPs, health and social care professionals

You should have:
• Up to date experience and expertise in benefits case work including appeal representation
• Working knowledge of social security legislation
• strong written and verbal communication skills
• an ability to work on your own as well as part of a team
• a commitment to the promotion of anti-poverty and equality work

Please confirm in your application which post you are interested in.

Role Profile.docx

Please be aware that this post is subject to a Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) check and that you will be required to meet the cost of the DBS check – currently £44.00. The payment for this will be deducted from your first four months’ salary payments at a rate of £11.00 per month.  If you do not commence employment for any reason but the DBS has been processed, you will be sent an invoice for the payment of £44.00.

Our core data protection obligations and commitments are set out in the council’s primary Recruitment and Employment Privacy Notice which can be found at https://www.salford.gov.uk/gdpr.

You can apply via https://www.greater.jobs/search-and-apply/job-details/SF-27381/

GMWRAG heading for a record year on job vacancies. A new post in Tameside.

Tameside logoTAMESIDE MBC

Welfare Rights and Debt Advice Service

Cultural & Customer Services

Operations & Neighbourhoods


GRADE G SCP 23 £13,499 – SCP 28 £15,685

Permanent, 18 hours

Location: Tameside One, Ashton-under-Lyne

The role is primarily fixed at 18 hours per week – Monday, Wednesday, Friday 9.15am – 3.45pm but on occasion some flexibility may be required

Tameside MBC has a well-established Welfare Rights & Debt Advice Service. An opportunity has arisen for an experienced Welfare Rights Officer to join a wider team of both benefits and debt advisers in supporting Tameside residents with specialist level welfare benefit advice and appeal representation.

Your main responsibilities will be to provide specialist level welfare rights advice through our telephone advice line. You will be skilled in extracting essential information in order to provide a benefit check and establish if a resident has grounds for appealing a decision.

The post holder will be expected to see clients face to face when required and to be able to provide representation at Social Security Appeal Tribunals up to and including the Upper Tribunal.

The successful applicant would need to have relevant, demonstrable experience in providing welfare benefits advice work, including tribunal representation, and a good knowledge of the benefits system, especially in the areas of sickness and disability. As the role is predominately telephone based, it is essential that you have excellent customer service and communication skills.

For more information or for an informal discussion please contact Janine Yates on 0161 342 3494

This role is a designated customer facing role under the fluency duty and requires a specified level of spoken English in the person specification

Reference No: DPT17
Closing Date: 6th of May 2019 at 12 noon.

Job Description/ Person Specification.docx

Applications can be made via Greater Jobs.

Details of this advert will also remain on our job vacancies page until the closing date when they’ll move to our archive.

Brexit and Universal Credit going south.

GMWRAG has secured two excellent speakers on Brexit and Benefits for our next meeting for the Friday the 17th of May 2019. Stockport were due to host both that meeting and the 2nd GMWRAG GM UC Forum on the same day. Logistical complexities mean we have yet to secure a venue. Although we haven’t completely given up hope of Stockport being able to host we are currently feeling a bit like (insert Brexit joke here) and now need to revert to plans B or C as both our speakers are in great demand and have limited alternative availability.

Plan B is this. We put a plea out on here and social meejah and hope that one of our many members can produce a free, relatively accessible venue which can host up to 50 people on Friday the 17th of May 2019.

Plan C is that basically we will go to Stockport and hold an open air meeting. Maybe Edgeley Park (although we understand they’re not used to large crowds :))

Over to you GMWRAG members. Help save Brexit (and Benefits). Contact us vy the usual routes.

Initial details of the next meeting of the North West Mental Health Welfare Rights Advisers Group.

The next meeting of the North West Mental Health Welfare Rights Advisers group will be on Friday the 31st of May 2019.

The speaker will be Jane Crawford, Training and Development Manager for Housing Systems.

She will be talking about housing costs in Universal Credit including managed payments to landlords.

Presentation on Universal Credit and Human Rights now available for download.

The minutes of the latest NWMHWRAG meeting will be made available in due course but in the meantime to whet your appetite here’s a download to the presentation done by Ryan Bradshaw of Leigh Day at the last meeting.

Minutes of the first/last GMWRAG GM UC meeting will be set free into the wild sometime as soon as we get a minute too. They’re already up on the site but currently protected. DWP have raised no objections to the content so we think we’re good to go.

Public Law Project Wales Conference 2019.

GMWRAG is well aware that Wales is not a part of the North West of England or indeed Greater Manchester (albeit that we’re not convinced some in the North West are aware of this).

However, GMWRAG also has a long history of welcoming members from Chester and North East Wales to our meetings and we’ve repeatedly been made aware that advisers in those areas are aware of and do use the site. We’re not about to embark on a round of publicising every event which could be relevant to our North Walian friends but as we have a good relationship with PLP AND we’re also in the throes of organising a half day meeting ourselves focused on Brexit and Benefits so publicising PLP Wales conference seems not unreasonable for all concerned. Numerous of our members have also had nothing but positive things to say about PLP North too.

We could at this point make the argument that much of the agenda below will apply to England but that sounds suspiciously like the reverse argument that Wales is just like England and our Welsh administrator (yes, how did THAT happen?) has banned such talk.

GMWRAG would also like to apologise for the weird set up with links in this post. Normally if we link to a person we link using their name as their link. However, this post decided part way through it wasn’t going to co-operate so we’ve tried to insert long links after their names. After a while, we simply gave up. With apologies to all those who do not have a link the ends didn’t justify the means. In our defence, PLP didn’t provide any links at all 🙂

Anyway… the Public Law Project Wales Conference 2019 is here.

Brexit, access to justice, legal aid, migration and settled status, online courts, strategic legal work.

Cardiff University Glamorgan Building, Thursday the 25th of April 2019.

10.00 Introduction
Jo Hickman, Director, Public Law Project – https://uk.linkedin.com/in/jo-hickman-756b5553

10.10 Opening address
Jane Hutt AM

10.30 Replacing EU law in Wales post-Brexit: Devolution vs delegation
With swathes of EU law being replaced in a post-Brexit UK this session looks at the impact in Wales, across environment, food and agriculture, and issues arising with devolved governance.

Chair: Alison Pickup, Public Law project
Jeremy Miles AM, Counsel General for Wales – http://www.assembly.wales/en/memhome/Pages/MemberProfile.aspx?mid=5021
Alexandra Sinclair, Public Law Project (SIFT project lead) – https://publiclawproject.org.uk/latest/plp-launches-its-latest-project-in-response-to-brexit-the-sift-project/

More speakers TBC

11.30 break (with snacks!)

11.45 Digitalisation and online courts – Threats and opportunities for Wales
With the Government in Westminster already committed to digitalisation, this session looks at the challenges for Wales, including those posed by digital access and literacy, and the opportunities given differences in scale, potential ambitions and devolved tribunals.
Dr Huw Pritchard, Cardiff University – http://www.cardiff.ac.uk/people/view/478900-pritchard-huw
Dr Joe Tomlinson, Public Law Project and Kings College London – https://kclpure.kcl.ac.uk/portal/joseph.tomlinson.html

12.30 Brexit and Immigration: The EU Settlement Scheme and Vulnerable Communities in Wales

There are around 80 000 EU citizens living in Wales as a function of the free movement rules. These people will need to apply to the EU Settlement Scheme to secure a new immigration status in the UK before the rights of residence under the free movement framework are extinguished. The EU Settlement Scheme is a challenging administrative undertaking for the UK Government. It requires the processing of millions of applications within a relatively short period of time and relies on individuals making applications to the Scheme. This session will look at the issues being faced by individuals applying to the Scheme from communities in Wales, especially by those likely to face difficulties in making successful applications.

Chair: Byron Karemba, Public Law Project – https://publiclawproject.org.uk/resources/4254/
Hayley Morgan, Travelling Ahead: Gypsy, Roma and Traveller Advice & Advocacy Service
Wiard Sterk, The 3Million – https://uk.linkedin.com/in/wiardsterk
Bethan Bateman, Head of Migration within the Welsh Government EU Transition Team

13.30 Law Commission consultation paper on the Simplification of the Immigration Rules
Lisa Smith and Stephanie Theophanidou Law Commission Public Law Team – https://www.lawcom.gov.uk/about/who-we-are/

13.40 Lunch

14.30 Afternoon session

Access to justice in Wales
Do people in Wales have adequate access to representation and the courts to vindicate their rights and ensure public bodies behave lawfully?  This session will look at access to legal aid, representation and judicial review.
Chair: Polly Brendon, Public Law Project – https://uk.linkedin.com/in/polly-brendon-713bb491
Salli Edwards, Chief Executive, Flintshire Citizen’s Advice – http://flintshirecab.org.uk/team/salli-edwards/
Michael Imperato, Watkins and Gunn – https://www.watkinsandgunn.co.uk/team/michael-imperato/
Jess Mant, Cardiff University – https://www.cardiff.ac.uk/people/view/1223110-mant-jess
Dr Sarah Nason, Bangor University – https://www.bangor.ac.uk/law/staff/sarah-nason/en

15.30 break

15.50 afternoon breakouts – please choose one of three

Legal aid
This will be a workshop for practitioners to discuss the shape of legal aid following the MOJs Post Implementation Review (PIR) of LASPO, and the publication of the MoJ’s “Legal Support Action Plan.” We will particularly be seeking the views and contribution of current legal aid providers in Wales.  Areas to discuss will include:
The accessibility and use of the Exceptional Case Funding scheme
The removal of the mandatory telephone gateway for Discrimination, Education and Debt cases
The promised review of the financial eligibility criteria for legal aid
Polly Brendon, Public Law Project
Carol Storer, Interim Director, Legal Action Group
Joanna Gregson, Equalities and Human Rights Commission

Strategic legal work in Wales
This session looks at strategic use of the law through both casework and campaigning. Case studies will include the criminalisation of women who are council tax debtors and the bedroom tax case.
Chair: Owain Rhys James, Civitas Chambers
Carla Clarke, Child Poverty Action Group (CPAG)
Sara Lomri, Public Law Project
Naima Sakande, Centre for Criminal Appeal

Public law decision making in Wales
An increasing number of duties on public bodies in Wales require them to ‘take into account’, to ‘have due regard’ to or to ‘take all reasonable steps’ to protect various rights and interests. However, few, if any, of these duties give rise to specific rights of redress for individuals. Our panel discusses whether these duties can really lead to better decision-making in the absence of such individual rights, and how this relates to access to justice in Welsh public law.

Sarah Nason, Bangor University
Rhodri Williams QC, 30 Park Place and Linenhall Chambers
Katrin Shaw, Public Sector Ombudsman for Wales
Emyr Lewis, Blake Morgan

16.50 Update from the Commission on Justice in Wales
Following their consultation on the future of justice in Wales, a Commissioner gives an update prior to their forthcoming report in 2019.

Professor Elwen Evans QC, Swansea University and Commission on Justice in Wales

17.10 finish

Delegate fees:
Standard 120 + VAT
Discounted 80 + VAT
Advisers 60.00 + VAT
Student fee 10 + VAT

Follow this link to select breakout session here.

Download the flyer here.

Big booking form at the bottom of this page here.

A new vacancy at Trafford Housing Trust.

Barely a day month goes by… blah blah blah. Can also be found in the usual place. Yes, we’re aware we’ve some tidying up to do on recent vacancies. We’ll get there. Anyway, have a job!

Trafford Housing Trust

Trafford Housing Trust logoJob Vacancy: Temporary Welfare Rights Officer

Salary:  £29,610 – £32,796

Location – Sale Point, Trafford, Greater Manchester

Hours – 36.25

Term – Temporary until April 2020

At the Trust we are all about making communities and society in general, stronger, better, safer and happier. An opportunity to further this vision has arisen in our Customer Support Team at Trafford as we are looking to recruit a temporary Welfare Rights Officer.  Maximising customer’s income through the effective take up of welfare benefits is instrumental in furthering our ambition of creating a society free from poverty.

In this post the successful person will ensure that a professional wide-ranging welfare rights advice service is provided to our customers who wish to claim a benefit or challenge a decision that has been made about a benefit they have claimed.

Given the sensitive nature of the role, qualities such as empathy and patience are essential as is the ability to adapt to the needs of the customer and ensure that they fully understand their options, rights and responsibilities.

The successful person will be able to build rapport with customers, external agencies and business colleagues in maximising customer disposable income both at the start of and during their tenancies.

Experience of working in a fast paced, demanding environment is essential and the individual we are looking for will need to be highly organised and self-motivated.

The post holder will support colleagues from across the business as necessary with cascading any benefit legislation changes and holding training sessions where needed. As part of the role will involve visiting customers in their own homes, access to a car for this role is essential.

Primary Responsibilities

  • Visiting customers who would like assistance with claiming benefits or challenging decisions.
  • Assisting with claims, appeals, mandatory reconsiderations and tribunal submissions
  • Preparing cases for and representing customers at tribunal
  • Meticulous case and outcome recording

Essential Criteria

  • Proven knowledge of welfare benefits
  • Experience of implementing procedures to support your work and experience in accurate

recording and monitoring of outcomes.

  • Driving Licence and access to a vehicle

Closing Date: Friday 29th March at 12pm

To see the role profile and apply for this role on the internal application form, please click here.

Please ask external candidates to log on to our external website.

People and Talent

Next meeting of the NWMHWRAG. Ryan Bradshaw on tour. Oh, sorry. TP & AR!

The next meeting of the North West Mental Health Welfare Rights Advisers Group will take place on Friday the 29th March at 9.30am for 10am.

The speaker will be Ryan Bradshaw from Leigh Day solicitors.  He is going to talk about the judgment in R (TP & AR) –v- Secretary of State for Work and Pensions [2018] EWHC 1474 on transitional protection on transfer to Universal Credit.  Leigh Day are looking for cases to bring other similar legal challenges.

This meeting will be in the Community Room at Central Manchester Fire Station.

Address: Cassidy Close off Thompson Street, Manchester M4 5FP.

It’s a short walk from Piccadilly and there is a car park on Thompson Street.

The Community Room has its own entrance.  Please don’t enter the Fire station by any other entrance.

From Cassidy Close you take the first turning on the left. Walk towards the building and then left again.  You should now be at the back of the building.

Walk towards a set of double doors under an overhang.  The entrance to the Community Room is on the right just before you reach the double doors.

If you can’t find the room please contact Helen Rogers. Group members should already have contact details.