To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what assessment her Department made prior to implementing the £20 a week uplift to universal credit due to the covid-19 outbreak of the effect of that policy on (a) economically vulnerable people, (b) household food security and (c) the duties of public bodies under the Equalities Act 2010.
We have announced measures that can be quickly and effectively operationalised. This allowed, for example, for the swift introduction of the £20 a week uplift to the Universal Credit standard allowance to respond to the effects of the current pandemic for those experiencing the most financial disruption. The changes we have made to the benefit system in response to the pandemic provide a balanced package of support.
Ministers have fully complied with their statutory duties when making decisions on the existing package of support. There is insufficient data to estimate the precise economic impact on different groups. We continue to monitor data sources including tax and benefit data to understand the effect of COVID-19 on household incomes and debt.