Mayor calls on Prime Minister not to end Universal Credit uplift as 132,000 South Yorkshire families at risk of losing £1,000 a year
South Yorkshire mayor Dan Jarvis has criticised Prime Minister Boris Johnson for his plan to cut the £20-a-week uplift in Universal Credit.
The PM has indicated that the UC increase, which was brought in to help during the height of the coronavirus lockdown, will be scrapped by the end of September.
Analysis from the Joseph Rowntree Foundation shows that as many as 132,000 families in South Yorkshire could lose around £1,000 a year.
The hardest hit area in South Yorkshire would be the constituency of Sheffield Brightside & Hillsborough where the cut would impact on 15,070 families. Doncaster Central would affect the second most with 12,820 families set to lose out.
The Prime Minister has previously said: “My strong preference is for people to see their wages rise through their efforts rather than through taxation of other people put into their pay packets, rather than welfare.”
But further analysis has shown that 40 per cent of UC claimants are already in some form of employment, mostly on low wages.
Mayor Dan Jarvis, who alongside other metro mayors in the country, is against the planned cut of UC.
“For those affected, this cut will cause unimaginable anxiety.,” he said.
“This extra £20 per week can be the difference between putting food on the table or going hungry for some families and it will have an enormous impact on our local economies.
“This isn’t money that sits in bank accounts, it’s money that is spent and put back into our local economy.”
“Universal Credit payments were already far too low before the pandemic. Its problems were never going to be resolved by a temporary, inadequate uplift.
“But to withdraw this vital lifeline for over 130,000 South Yorkshire families, at a time of economic hardship, is morally indefensible and economically illiterate.”
Labour have laid an Opposition Day motion to force a vote on the issue this Wednesday. The Labour Mayors have called on all MPs to take action to stop the planned cut.