The government’s decision to cut Universal Credit funds will affect an average of one child every second next month, as Save the Children told ITV.
Save the Children is one of a long line of charities, think tanks, unions and leaders from across the political spectrum hitting out against the removal of the £20-a-week uplift from Wednesday.
What is the Universal Credit uplift?
The Universal Credit is a £20-a-week increase in the standard allowance that supported hundreds of thousands in the pandemic. Cutting it will plunge them into poverty, says ITV.
Adopted on April 6 last year, the uplift was due to come to an end in April 2021 but was extended to September 2021.
Who are Universal Credit’s benefactors?
UC is available for people who are out of work or on a low household income, aged over-18 and under pension age, and have less than £16,000 in household savings.
For many families, the cut will mean losing £1,000 a year. Just over 3.5 million children in the UK are living in households that receive UC payments, according to government figures.
What are the repercussions?
Save the Children told ITV the figures show that 1.3 children will be hit by the cut every second on average over the 31-day period starting from October 13. Stressing that the situation is more dire for poor people in wintertime.
Gwen Hines, Save the Children’s chief executive, said that it was “astonishing” that the cut was going ahead, as families struggle with inflation, rising energy prices, fuel shortages and promised tax increases.
According to ITV, a government spokesperson said that Universal Credit was always temporary. That it was implemented to handle the “disruption of the toughest stages of the pandemic, and it has done so.”