Written evidence from representative of BlackoutUK/PositivelyUK [PCW0048]


I am representing myself. I am volunteer Collective member with BlackoutUK and a Voluntary HIV Peer Mentor with PositivelyUK. I am a 52 year old Black Queer Man living with HIV diagnosed in 2000, managing my own mental health recovery and I am dependent on a friend for shelter as homeless following leasehold mortgage repossession failed rehousing efforts since the time in 2014. I was born in London in   Barnardo's care a twin male both transracially adopted and moved to Norfolk and returned in 1988. I’m based Lambeth 30 years since.

I am convinced my present combination of Personal Independence Payment and Universal Credit have helped me recover by enabling me to navigate but feel Universal Basic income has real merits for reasons indicated.

I make my submissions independently except quoted and referred to following

Citizens’ Income Inquiry session at Birmingham University held in January 2017.  This was an important part of the evidence of an enquiry and may be useful background material. https://youtu.be/syVNeYCQtyU?t=6415

This is clip at summary of the recorded Inquiry session and Annie Miller MP points outs with facts to support the similar feeling I had that ‘ a universal type of payment protects rich and poor alike’ current alternatives don’t. Panelists Andrew Harrop was against one form but for a tiered type https://youtu.be/syVNeYCQtyU?t=3905 which is essentially how mine is working.



1 What are the main challenges that DWP faces as a result of the “Fourth Industrial Revolution”?

Operating in a way that invigorates those it has a duty to serve so they can escape constructed descent through the implied safety net.

Although it is a strong and innate work ethic that entitles people  to support actually don’t feel need to ‘work’ per se in such ‘work’ so DWP needs to address a way to meet these certain individuals needs to subsist prospectively above the poverty line provide minimum income and housing through entire life yet relationally enabling them and to return in future to work and have entitled status in the meantime.

The agency of the DWP will have to become much closer to something like ‘the form of this unique set of present future individuals and households innate characteristic aspiration pre dependency’ is and or has been; For the people by the people.

Such agency cannot and must not allow itself to foreclose on the necessity of provision of welfare due to a perceived and or relative (constructed) ‘a gap’ between rich and poor.

A human rights based constitutional state must come to exist fundamentally as means underpinning DWP for first promoting and establishing a national root and branch sociocultural political stake holding and which then is securing this to identify as unlawful market forces and its agents that have led to socioeconomic and social justice inequality, the direct and contrary negative impacts.


What do we know about the possible likely impact on the labor market?

For example: Are some sectors or types of jobs more likely to be affected than others?

It can only be good for all sectors and jobs since it enables individual recovery and reskilling through free online study and psychosocial learning for wellbeing stabilization so industrial sectors would harness experience also; considering the retirement age is gone.

People hustle and job-share.

Delivery drivers were concerned by automation, but it has not seemed to happen in London yet.

The gig economy seems bustling full of new drivers living off the rich, however I’ve been there and it’s casual for some survival for others, it’s unsustainable mentally as first answer indicates.

Bus drivers do not like their jobs and conditions. Things will slow down and integrate.

Are some groups of people more likely to be affected than others?

The group of people most socially oppressed will most likely experience negative with respect  to long term since as Black people have had their confidence shattered by the revelation of historic state violence: This simply needs an additional appropriate projected fiscal reparation within the constitution above, a commission or something to counter what would/ will be otherwise ongoing race based socioeconomic social justice inequalities across all the relevant areas of health housing employment and education to cancel out the presently spiraling fear based impact in Black communities in the immediate and long term future.


              What new types of jobs and opportunities could become available?

s it likely that there will be a reduction in the number of jobs available?

New ‘jobs’ in early intervention social movements in health for example would appear but only briefly because it would saturate.

However, communities [Brighton/ Lambeth/ Newnham/ Lewisham] in these movements are struggling presently to adjust and become communities of purpose and leaderful movements.

Presumably this means hierarchical initial forms of governance which themselves are not diversity and inclusion friendly and harmful to the objective of equality for those of us with a protected characteristic  - citizens juries may in this regard become the norm and jobs with skills that convene such would thus emerge and progressively evolve.


2 Is there a need to consider new, long-term approaches to addressing change in the labor market: for example, introducing a Universal Basic Income (UBI)?


Is UBI an appropriate short-term response to shocks in the labour market?

What can the Government learn from the international evidence on UBI?

Yes, precisely as the Pandemic outcry has shown, the then currently employed became ineligible, effectively punished.

Others who are eligible are missing out because of the complicated system of means testing, trapping them in poverty.

If you enrich these groups then in short order these individuals enrich the mainstream charity sector with donations, volunteer time or both for the young-homeless, street homeless, those with mental health support needs which are also broken or at breaking point: critically of note charities exclusive for Black Queer Men and LGBT in general are not readily referenced by association.



Excerpt from BlackoutUK’s Black queer Men’s Collective, ‘Breath 8:46’ current mental health initiative. 

“*    For Black men with minoritised sexualities or who are transgendered, the intersection of racist, patriarchal homophobic/transphobic structures of oppression require acknowledgement and specific culturally competent interventions. While ‘Black Queer Lives Matter’ to those who were protesting – the establishment is yet to catch up - government’s National Survey of over 100000 people failed to offer any insights into Black Queer Lives, so they remain invisible in most policy/public service decisions.”

In turn also minority group charities feel less acute needs in the same areas which promotes a culture of care harmony and diversity and inclusivity across society passed down to the next generation.


Excerpt (https://www.ubilabnetwork.org/blog/ubi-information-briefing-from-the-ubi-lab-network)]

Ie [ “It would reduce poverty and help to achieve a situation where nobody in this country would have to rely on food banks or become homeless because they can’t pay their rent. A rise in food bank use, homelessness and mental ill-health have all been linked to Universal Credit (4a 4b), while a Lancet report found a link between Universal Credit and worsening mental ill-health (5).”


Are DWP Work Coaches well equipped to advise people who are looking for work on new and emerging sectors and jobs?

Before lockdown 2018/19 it was slowly apparent that the Work coach had good ‘in principle’ information but it is ultimately the client and coach quality of relationship that will engender any of the needed capital skills passing across the interview desk.

I doubt any regard has been given to ethnic groups who work differently.

Coaches must as they seemed to, remain the of type compassionate to otherwise unknown culturally specific needs; matching black people with either black coaches or coaches who are appreciative of the intersectionality of support needs in recovery born of overarching discriminatory and cyclically systemic (occurring at plateaus and when reintegrating in slow changing restructured collaborative government local settings i.e. Lambeth)  


How could DWP improve the training and advice it offers to jobseekers?

An improvement would be selling the training to clients on grounds that they qualify implicitly.

Now things are different briefly. A moment is at hand.

In peer mentoring training for example a method of self-reflective writing is ‘offered’ ‘Window of the world’ to enable faster relating to clients - six categories of self are summarised by self for reference; Family, Education, Culture ,Gender/Sexuality, Faith /Spirituality , Experience.

The Job seekers you want are those who have written themselves off before they begin.

In this climate such individuals would be keen to centre themselves for once.

So, this reflective approach as simple method to put voice with value, and then a tool to rate and match as being prequalified with qualitative traits would catalyze uptake

This compels a shift in culture in that ‘demographic’ [ideologically thinking of them] and makes a powerful case against them being stereotyped, as an option; its a small-catch probably but high yield socially. 

It seems possible and worthwhile to me, since for example as I am presently engaged with PositivelyUK (Charity (30 yrs) and BlackOutUK (Social Enterprise 5yrs) mentioned and both invested fundamentally in collective and community individual development and reinvestment networks.


What support, advice and training should DWP offer to people who are looking to progress in work, or take up more hours?


What is DWP’s role in ensuring that young people have the skills they need to get into and progress in work?


How could DWP work more closely with employers to ensure that claimants have the skills they need to find work in the future labour market?


As the workplace changes, will it be necessary to change the legal definition of employment to ensure that people continue to have the appropriate legal status and protections? Might any other legal changes be needed?

Yes I believe as indicated a legally framed article / statutory instrument / constitution/ commission for reparations for the descendants of the Transatlantic Slave trade is likely and in the latter necessary to counter the rich and powerful in government from doing whatever they want to suit only rich and powerful economic and or political interests and to guide the progress by democratic debate in the commons and  free from house of Lords intervention; based on .

June 2020