Benefits claimants

22 Jul 2021
In January 2021, the Indian Health Ministry officially allowed Aadhaar-based authentication when creating a UHID for identification and authentication of beneficiaries for various health IT applications promoted by the Ministry. This enabled the Co-Win portal, which is used to book COVID-19
22 Jul 2020
It is said, better late than never. Some activists and academics, hesitantly, thought the old maxim could be applied to the Centre's micro-credit facility for street vendors – which was indisputably behindhand, in the wake of the coronavirus-triggered lockdown, announced on March 24. But, more than
18 May 2020
On 21 April 2020, it was published in the Official Gazette of Mexico City that 4,264 non-salaried workers would be granted basic economic support in a single payment to cope with the health emergency. The Ministry of Labour and Employment Promotion (STyFE) had the possibility to launch this
Long Read

The global Covid-19 pandemic has acted as a catalyst for technology-intensive initiatives for welfare distribution, coming at a high cost to human rights and inclusion: enforcing automated discrimination, exacerbating existing inequalities and compromising access to essential benefits.

Long Read

In response to the pandemic, the Colombian National Development office devised an unconditional cash transfer programme in only two weeks. The beneficiary selection process, which was solely based on data already held by the government, remains shrouded in obscurity.

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Millions of people rely on India’s Public Distribution System (PDS) to receive subsidised food rations, which have become an essential ingredient of survival for many families during the Covid-19 pandemic. However, access to food rations is not guaranteed for all beneficiaries, with many women being left without access to food at a time of crisis.

News & Analysis

A recent ruling by the British Court of Appeal sided with welfare claimants after a flaw in the income calculating system was revealed. 

22 Jun 2020
Immigration rules that have left 1 million migrant workers in the UK at risk of destitution because they cannot claim universal credit should be suspended on public health grounds during the pandemic, a cross-party group of MPs has recommended. The work and pensions select committee said the no
Long Read

UK Local Authorities are looking at people’s social media accounts as part of their intelligence gathering and investigation tactics.

Long Read

Our partner organisation InternetLab has been researching the Bolsa Familia Program and its consequences for gender and privacy, here are the first results.

30 Mar 2020
An official directive from the Pakistani provincial government of Sindh titled "COVID-19 Mobile Registration System for Needy People" describes its use of multiple databases to identify those in need of welfare funds and disburse cash to them by combining taxpayers' data from the Federal Board of
By 2018, the Danish municipality of Gladsaxe, in Copenhagen, began identifying children at risk of abuse so that flagged families could be targeted for early intervention by applying a set of specially designed algorithms to information already gathered by the centralised Udbetaling Danmark
The United Nations Special Rapporteur on extreme poverty and human rights, Philip Alston, is preparing a thematic report to the UN General Assembly on the human rights impacts, especially on those living in poverty, of the introduction of digital technologies in the implementation of national social
20 Oct 2015
For low-income Americans to receive public benefits they are legally entitled to, they must submit to widespread monitoring of their intimate and personal affairs. This monitoring includes sharing a trove of personal documents and information, unannounced home visits from caseworkers, mandatory face
14 Dec 2018
The New York City public benefits system has been criticized for its punitive design, how it too often disciplines, rather than helps, people who are legally entitled to benefits. According to Mariana Chilton, the public benefits system is designed to control, surveil, and penalize low-income people
02 Dec 2016
Private companies are not the only actors pushing for increased control of benefit claimants. The World Bank has also instrumental in funding programmes aiming at assisting government in administrating welfare programmes which has led to futher surveillance of benefits claimants, in December 2016