On Wednesday 15th September, Parliament voted against the cut to Universal Credit after the Labour Party used one of its Opposition Day Debate slots to fight the Government’s plan to end the Universal Credit uplift.
The vote was not binding on the Government. But it was a clear view from Parliamentarians that to remove the £20 uplift in Universal Credit and Working Tax Credit at the end of September, was unfair, would hit local economies hard and push families into poverty. Almost 18,000 households across Feltham and Heston will be worse off as a result of this decision, and likely to be a loss of over £18.5m from the local economy. In Feltham and Heston over 14,500 children live in households claiming Universal Credit.
Across the UK, 5 million families claim Universal Credit, including over 3.5 million children. The Joseph Rowntree Foundation has suggested that the withdrawal of the uplift risks bringing 700,000 more people into poverty, including 300,000 children.
With the effects of the pandemic still being felt, pulling the rug out from underneath the feet of working people and pushing so many families into poverty is a choice which is wrong, and we will continue to call for an urgent change of course.