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More residents set to receive controversial benefits

Created on 12/10/2018 @ 14:04
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The government's controversial Universal Tax Credit takes a further move forward in Newtown this week with more claimants being put on the benefit.

The Department for Work and Pensions said the credit was being introduced to a wider number of people.

In a statement, it said:

Universal Credit now available to more claimants across Newtown
Universal Credit will now support all claimant types in Newtown, including people with disabilities, families and low earners, as well as jobseekers
Families on Universal Credit who move into work can claim back up to 85% of their eligible childcare costs, potentially boosting their finances by over £13,000 a year 
From April 2018, families and disabled people on Universal Credit in work now keep more of what they earn.

A spokesperson said: "More people across Newtown will benefit from a tailored welfare system, receiving additional support to move into and progress within work. This comes as the Universal Credit service expands to people in and out of work, those on low incomes, families, and those with disabilities.

"Universal Credit is simplifying the system and revolutionising welfare by making work pay. It also helps those who are in work to increase their hours and earnings."

Universal Credit replaces six benefits with one monthly payment and is already being claimed by single jobseekers. 

However, it has been claimed that many families will lose out financially as a result of the new system.

From this week, anyone in Newtown who would previously have made a claim to Income-based Jobseeker’s Allowance, Employment and Support Allowance, Income support, Working and Child Tax Credit and Housing Benefit will instead claim Universal Credit.

Minister for Employment Alok Sharma said: “Universal Credit is central to our commitment to help families improve their lives by moving into work. We know it’s working – with Universal Credit people are moving into work faster and staying in work longer than under the old system. 

“And now we are rolling it out to a wider range of people in a safe and controlled way. From today, more people, including families and disabled people, can claim Universal Credit and access the extra help it provides.”

In Newtown single jobseekers are already receiving support from their dedicated work coach to find employment or increase their hours and earnings. Now, all types of claimants will be able to benefit from the improved, personalised, one-to-one support that Universal Credit offers.

Camille Love, local Jobcentre Plus, said: “Universal Credit offers tailored support, which includes more personalised help from a work coach. The new system is also more flexible, which means people can take on short-term work to develop their skills and build up their experience. 

“Our staff are trained to support people throughout the claim process. We’d encourage anyone who needs extra help or information to come and talk to their work coach.”

Those on Universal Credit will now have 24-hour access to an online account that they can use to manage their claim, including reporting changes of circumstances, checking the details of their claim and date of their next Universal Credit payment. 

With the application process now completely online, Universal Credit streamlines the system, making benefits simpler to navigate and easier to understand. 

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