Perspectives of who commits housing benefit fraud

Warmington, Duncan (2007) Perspectives of who commits housing benefit fraud. BSc dissertation, University of Portsmouth.

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    Abstract

    Aims: Compare and contrast differing perceptions of housing benefit claimants. Objectives: 1.Analyse housing benefit in an historical and political context 2.Examine how society, and in particular the media, view benefit claimants and why these views are held. 3.Study academic theories of crime and how they relate to benefit fraud 4.Consider authentic local authority statistics and records and compare them against social opinion and academic assessment. Research Methods: The research consists of quantitative and qualitative data used in a realist manner, which endeavours to understand issue that affect people's everyday lives. Because of the complexity of the situations being researched and the individualistic views expressed the dissertation will, in the main, be a post-modern critique. Conclusions: The complexity of the benefit system encourages fraud and error to occur. Counter-fraud initiatives, particularly financial incentives, successfully established counter-fraud officers within local authority's, but also caused to an over inflation of the fraud problem. Both the complexities of the system and the financial incentives have led to people being unnecessarily criminalised. The media invoke lifestyle dreams that are unattainable for most people causing social pressure that leads to crime, including benefit fraud. Benefit claimants are marginalised simply for being at the bottom of society. The media do not accurately report or reflect life on benefit, but pamper to society's bigotry. Benefit fraud does exist and taxpayer's money does need protecting. However, those who commit fraud do so for a range of reasons, but not all reasons warrant the level condemnation society dispenses.

    Item Type: Dissertation
    Departments/Research Groups: Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences > Institute of Criminal Justice Studies
    Depositing User: Jane Polwin
    Date Deposited: 20 Jan 2011 12:47
    Last Modified: 28 Jan 2015 11:13
    URI: http://eprints.port.ac.uk/id/eprint/241

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