Universal Credit Roll-Out

Part of the debate – in the House of Commons at 3:16 pm on 24th October 2017.

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Photo of Eleanor Smith Eleanor Smith Labour, Wolverhampton South West 3:16 pm, 24th October 2017

I recently had a meeting with the Snow Hill citizens advice bureau in my constituency, which has expressed concerns about the roll-out of the full service. I agree that we need to simplify our benefit system, but universal credit is not working for most of its claimants. The six-week waiting period is pushing claimants further into debt, with some facing more delays if they have complicated circumstances. This forces claimants to borrow money and rely on food banks, and some face eviction while waiting for their first payment. Although the full service has not yet been implemented in my constituency, the shocking cases I have heard about from the citizens advice bureau and other organisations have prompted me to speak out. I agree with many of my colleagues that the Government should pause the roll-out until a system that is fully functional has been put in place.