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SALFORD UNIVERSAL CREDIT CLAIMANT TOLD TO LIVE ON 47 A WEEK
 

Star date: 12th November 2018

'HOW AM I GOING TO MANAGE? I HAVEN'T GOT A CLUE...'

A Salford Universal credit claimant has been told that she must live on just 47 per week, or 190 per month, after 'migrating' from Employment and Support Allowance (ESA)... "How am I going to manage? I haven't got a clue" she tells the Salford Star.

This latest disgusting poverty setback comes on top of the shock of her father dying from a heart attack while waiting for a DWP appeal, after being told he was fit for work. His case, in retrospect, is being heard by an upper tribunal this week.

Full details here...


While the Department of Work and Pensions, or DWP, told the Salford Star last week that the rollout of Universal Credit, from 'live' to 'full' in the city 'should have no impact', the horror cases, according to the Salford Unemployed and Community Resource Centre (SUCRC), are coming 'thick and fast'.

"I think it needs saying that this isn't a cock up, it's a deliberate vindictive attack on working class people" says Barbara Bentham, who also works as a benefit appeals officer at SUCRC.

The latest disgraceful episode regarding Universal Credit relates to a woman who 'migrated' from Employment and Support Allowance (ESA) to the new benefit and was told to live on just 190 per month after rent, or around 47 per week...

"I moved into my own property with my younger brother, so applied for housing benefit and they told me I need to go onto Universal Credit" she tells the Salford Star "When I went to take my ID in, they said 'It's going to be a couple of weeks before you get your payment so we can give you an advance payment of 540, but you have to pay it back at so much a month'.

"I agreed to pay back 54 a month but before I agreed I asked how much I'd be getting a month and he said around the same figure" she explains "So I agreed to it and got my first payment last week of 190, for a month. I phoned them up and asked if there was anything they could do, but no.

"How am I going to manage? I haven't got a clue, I don't know" she adds "It's disgusting. Everyone I phone sounds shocked but they're not bothered. It's going to be heating or eating, one or the other."

To make matters worse, her father died of a heart attack recently shortly after being told he was fit for work. At the time, he was waiting for a further DWP appeal...

"He had appealed at a tribunal, lost unfairly, and we challenged that at an upper tribunal which agreed with me" recalls Barbara Bentham "So it was listed to be reheard but he died while waiting. We've got a letter from his doctor saying that, while he can't categorically state that the stress caused his heart attack it certainly didn't help."

The further appeal is being heard this week in retrospect but now the system is persecuting his daughter...

"We're helping her to challenge these decisions" Barbara adds "Under the old legacy benefit system, if somebody had a series of crisis loans they were paid off one at a time and there was a limit of how much they could take. They had to leave you with a liveable amount. That cap has now been lifted."

There are now fears that, with 3,700 Salford claimants being told to 'migrate' from 'live' Universal Credit to the 'full service' within the next four weeks, similar cases are going to multiply...

"Cramming 3,700 claims into four weeks? They haven't got the staff, the expertise or the systems" argues SUCRC Manager Alec McFadden "It's going to particularly affect people who don't have computers or the ability to use computers.

"Esther McVey, the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, should be sacked immediately" he adds "It's completely heartless, and this will run up to 24th December and probably end with people coming into Christmas with no money. It's horrendous.

"You worry that it will reach a stage where it becomes normal. It seems that every month it gets worse" he says "Add to this the fact that benefits have been frozen since 2014 so with inflation you've actually seen a cut."

And Barbara Bentham, who is on the front line of the Universal Credit horrors seeing more appeal cases every day, concludes... "They know how bad it is and they know how many people are going to be worse off but they continue to roll it out anyway it's just heartless..."

Meanwhile, the young woman forced to live on less than 50 a week is facing a bleak Christmas.

See also previous Salford Star articles...

Horror As Thousands of Salford Universal Credit Claimants Could Have No Money For Christmas click here

79% of Salford Universal Credit Claimants in Rent Arrears click here

Salford Trades Council Condemns Citizens Advice Bureau for 39Million Universal Credit Collaboration click here

wrote
at 08:51:27 on 22 November 2018
housing benefit and tax credits have been abolished. if you have old benefits and do not change cicomstances you will stay on old benfits till the national migration from 2020, but if a new claim is needed its UC only. new claims for tax credits esa hb ect are not possible.its all UC now. and if you earn less than 35hrs x min wage you must report to jobcentre to prove your looking for more hours. and for workers or be sanctioned, and you then must cover full rent from your wage alone.DWP belive this will encorage people to stop having the cheek to be low paid.

Janet, T wrote
at 08:49:09 on 15 November 2018
Tony D-You heartless man it's typical of a man like to be so insensitive and the woman has just lost her dad ffs, the word is clothe not cloth, besides you if you work more than 25 hours a week but less than, 30 you can claim working tax credit(not a welfare benefit) so next time think before you comment because that was nasty, let's hope one day you don't you don't get too ill that you have to give up your job

Bob the regular wrote
at 12:43:47 on 13 November 2018
there you go ,all the working classes all squabling about a few pennies, the tories and the labour ruling elite love this sort of talk.You'll never learn will you? Look at the cash Dennet Merry Becky and their kind get, They don't squabble about pennies among themselves as they sit on their fat well rounded arses collecting their huge pay checks for making a balls of things do they?

peter wrote
at 05:42:05 on 13 November 2018
Tony, you're either talking utter shite or you're not claiming what you're entitled to. Either way I don't care. Good luck with your continued martyrdom.

Nigel wrote
at 19:15:57 on 12 November 2018
Tony - she was on ESA - which means she is considered too ill to work, not Job Seekers Allowance. You may qualify for some Housing Benefit, depending on your wages.

Tony D wrote
at 12:45:01 on 12 November 2018
Single guy here, part time worker, don't qualify for any benefits, pay my own rent, heating, lighting and community charge. After all that, I have 25 a week to feed and cloth myself. Why should I feel sorry for this woman and others like her?

Kevin Bolt wrote
at 11:32:37 on 12 November 2018
It doesn't say which group of ESA she was in. Regulation 19 of the UC (transitional provisions) regulations 2014 applies if you move from ESA to UC.

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