Ahead of a vote in the House of Commons today (Wednesday 18 October), Labour’s Shadow Work and Pensions Secretary has called on Conservative MPs to support a motion to pause the roll out of the embattled Universal Credit programme.
Labour’s call to support today’s motion follows reports that up to 25 Conservative MPs may be willing to rebel against the Government over their flagship social security programme, as evidence continues to mount that it is pushing people further into debt, rent arrears and even evictions. This will be a major test of a key Government reform.
The Department for Work and Pensions’ own data shows that one in four claimants are having to wait over six weeks to receive any funds, with half of those in rent arrears reporting that they went into debt after claiming Universal Credit.
Debbie Abrahams MP, Labour’s Shadow Work and Pensions Secretary, calling on Conservative MPs to support the motion, said:“The Government has so far not listened to MPs’ concerns about the mounting issues with their flagship social security programme. We must stand together to make our voices heard.
“I urge Conservative MPs to vote with their conscience and support our motion to pause the roll out of Universal Credit.
“The social security system is meant to protect people from debt and arrears, not exacerbate their situation.
“We must pause and fix Universal Credit now, before millions are made worse off.”
Conservatives have finally listened to Labour and scrapped premium phone helpline for claimants
Debbie Abrahams MP, Labour’s Shadow Work and Pensions Secretary, commenting on today’s Universal Credit statistics, said:
“The increase in the number of people on Universal Credit is worrying given the Government’s chaotic handling of its roll out.
“The Conservatives have finally listened to Labour and scrapped the premium phone helpline for claimants, now they need to listen to the calls of charities and councils and back Labour’s motion today to immediately pause and fix the roll out of Universal Credit, before more people are pushed into rent arrears, poverty and homelessness.”