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  1. ITV Report

Universal Credit - escape route from benefits, or heartless reform?

Newcastle Central MP Chi Onwurah and Teesside MP Simon Clarke on Around The House Photo: ITV Tyne Tees

The Government is under pressure over the rollout of Universal Credit, losing a Commons vote this week.

Labour wants the Department for Work and Pensions to put the reform put on pause, and scrap the 6-week wait before new claimants receive their first payment.

The new system rolls SIX existing benefits - including Housing Benefit - into one.

The six benefits being replaced by Universal Credit Credit: ITV Tyne Tees

The aim is to simplify the system and remove the 'cliff-edge' loss of benefits when someone starts paid work, by tapering payments.

So is Universal Credit a heartless reform or an essential change, to make sure work pays?

MPs Simon Clarke and Chi Onwurah give their views on the rollout and the delayed first payments after claiming:

Around The House with Paul Brand is on ITV at 11.15pm (Thursday 19 October).