William Eichler 30 June 2022

Charity calls for suspension of UC deductions

Charity calls for suspension of UC deductions image
Image: Yingzaa_ST/Shutterstock.com.

Suspending deductions from Universal Credit for Government debt would help over a million low income households struggling with the cost-of-living crisis, researchers say.

The Government has suspended deductions for ongoing energy usage because of the risk that these repayments will cause hardship.

However, the debt charity StepChange argues that the impact of rising costs make deductions for Government debts a major risk for households on low incomes.

According to StepChange, their clients on Universal Credit are set to face an average monthly budget deficit of £77 come October even with Government support. The average deduction for advances and overpayments is around £50 a month.

StepChange is therefore calling on the Department of Work and Pensions to pause deductions for these debts until benefits are uprated next April.

StepChange director of external affairs Richard Lane said: ‘The principle that debts owed to Government should be repaid when it’s affordable for people to do so is not in question, but now is a time for a pragmatic pause. Among our clients, around half of those relying on Universal Credit and subject to deductions for overpayments are unable to make ends meet.

‘The Government has an opportunity to plug the support gap for over a million households by putting these deductions on hold until benefits are uprated, and taking the opportunity created by the pause to rework deductions into an affordability framework that fits better with best practice in debt advice. We think that’s a sensible response to mitigate how the cost of living crisis is playing out among low income households reliant on Universal Credit.’

SIGN UP
For your free daily news bulletin
Highways jobs

Team Leader - Nexus Support - Hockley

Essex County Council
£21258 - £23437 per annum
Team Leader - Nexus Support - HockleyPermanent, Full Time £21,258 to £23,437 per annumLocation
Recuriter: Essex County Council

Support Worker - Nexus Support - Wickford

Essex County Council
£10 - £12.50 per hour
Essex County Council (ECC) are delighted to be supporting Nexus Support to recruit Support Workers on both permanent and bank contracts for their s England, Essex, Wickford
Recuriter: Essex County Council

Support Worker - Nexus Support - Rochford

Essex County Council
£10 - £12.50 per hour
Essex County Council (ECC) are delighted to be supporting Nexus Support to recruit Support Workers on both permanent and bank contracts for their su England, Essex, Rochford
Recuriter: Essex County Council

Assistant Director - Investment Strategy

West Midlands Pension Fund
£101,074 - £121,753
This is a rare opportunity to join one of the largest and most progressive pension funds in the UK at an exciting time in its development. Wolverhampton, West Midlands
Recuriter: West Midlands Pension Fund

Registered Manager - Children's Residential Home

Cumbria County Council
44,624 – 45,648
An exciting opportunity has arisen for the right person to join our Children’s Residential Home in Penrith as Registered Manager. Penrith, Cumbria
Recuriter: Cumbria County Council

Partner Content

Circular highways is a necessity not an aspiration – and it’s within our grasp

Shell is helping power the journey towards a circular paving industry with Shell Bitumen LT R, a new product for roads that uses plastics destined for landfill as part of the additives to make the bitumen.

Support from Effective Energy Group for Local Authorities to Deliver £430m Sustainable Warmth Funded Energy Efficiency Projects

Effective Energy Group is now offering its support to the 40 Local Authorities who have received a share of the £430m to deliver their projects on the ground by surveying properties and installing measures.

Pay.UK – the next step in Bacs’ evolution

Dougie Belmore explains how one of the main interfaces between you and Bacs is about to change.