Universal credit cut “another strain on hard pressed households” - Lockhart

Upper Bann MP Carla Lockhart has said that the decision by the Government to take away the £20 uplift in Universal credit from today will plunge many households in Northern Ireland into financial hardship.

By Carla Lockhart MP

Upper Bann

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Carla Lockhart said:

“Today around 130,000 people across Northern Ireland will wake up poorer because of the Government, and it’s decision to take away the £20 uplift per week in Universal Credit.

Faced with rising household costs across a range of essentials like food and fuel, it is a moral stain on the Government for taking this financial lifeline away from so many people.

With Christmas just around the corner, I am dealing with constituents in absolute despair at the financial hardship they are facing. They will be faced with a choice of eating or heating. How can anyone stand over doing this? A compassionate society does not do this.

Last week I called on the Communities Minister to step in to help with a top up of the Winter Fuel Payment, yet there is seemingly little being done by Ms Hargey to alleviate the pressures on households. It is a timely boost for many that the £100 High Street Voucher is arriving over the coming weeks, and I commend the Economy Minister for driving this project at a time when it is so badly needed by households and our business community.

We need that safety net provided for those needing help to remain strong, not to fray. This cut in universal credit places another strain on hard pressed households. We need everyone in Government and the NI Executive to step up and see what is in their power to do that helps alleviate this hardship.”

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