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RESTORE BILLIONS TO UNIVERSAL CREDIT, SAY LIB DEMS

October 29, 2018 9:00 AM

GOVERNMENT MUST RESTORE BILLIONS TO UNIVERSAL CREDIT, SAY LIB DEMS Department of Work and Pensions (Open Government Licence https://www.nationalarchives.gov.uk/doc/open-government-licence/version/3/)

Universal Credit Following the announcement of the delay in the rollout of Universal Credit, Local Government Association (LGA), Democrat Group Leader Cllr Howard Sykes, said: "Finally the Government has listened to the concerns of councils and slowed the implementation of Universal Credit (UC) managed migration.

"Real concerns remain about the lack of engagement with local government and local partners about the next phase of implementation.

"The Government needs to use this delay to work closely with the LGA, councils and stakeholders so that we can provide the best for vulnerable claimants and ensure no-one loses out on transitional protection. This is also vital to integrate benefits with work on housing, employment, health and financial inclusion so that our welfare system provides a genuine safety net and supports social mobility.

"Any extra money must also be used to ensure that people are better off on UC, and to fund councils properly for the vital support they provide. This includes restoring funding to councils for local welfare assistance so that they can provide the local safety net to help those struggling to cope with welfare reforms, including the rollout of UC". " We need to make sure those who have suffered can get the extra help they need as well as ensuring lessons are learned for other areas still to get Universal Credit".

"The delay to UC means councils will remain responsible for delivering Housing Benefit to a significant majority of claimants while only receiving around half of what it costs to pay for this work. With councils facing a funding gap that will reach almost £8 billion by 2025, they cannot be left to prop up further delays to the UC rollout without being properly funded."

Stephen Lloyd MP for Eastbourne and Liberal Democrat Work and Pensions spokesperson added:

"Universal Credit might be a good idea in principle, but the Conservatives' botched implementation of it is causing unnecessary misery for millions". "The leaked plans to reform Universal Credit will never solve the problem. They are only tinkering at the edges. Nothing short of restoring the billions the Tories cut from UC's Work Allowance will be acceptable".

"Liberal Democrats demand better. That is why I have urged Ministers to restore UC's Work Allowance to its original levels, so that work really does pay for those on low incomes. Without it the new benefit scheme will continue to lurch from crisis to crisis."

Source: ALDC - October 2018

END

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