North East charities urge Government to reconsider scrapping £20 Universal Credit uplift

A coalition of North East organisations has written t the Chancellor of the Exchequer, urging him to reverse the planned £20 a week cut to Universal Credit which will affect hundreds of thousands of households across the region.

The extra twenty pounds a week during the pandemic is due to be phased out this autumn. But the charities, trade unions and business leaders fear that'll cause poverty to increase.

The government says it was always a temporary measure, and is just one part of their support package.

Amanda Bailey, North East Child Poverty Commission

Within the letter, the coalition states that cutting Universal Credit as planned would directly impact 34% of all working-age households across the region – 2 in 5 of which are families with children.The regional organisations have also estimate the cut could take almost £5million a week out of the North East economy

The letter, which has also been sent to all North East MPs – argues that this cut will also increase child poverty, and call it 'the very opposite of ‘levelling up’.

A Government spokesperson said: "The Universal Credit uplift was always intended to be a temporary measure to help households through the pandemic, but it is just one part of our package of support.

"We've invested billions in our Plan for Jobs, which is already getting people back into employment, and will support people in the long-term by helping them learn new skills or find new work."