Lancaster and Morecambe charity urges Chancellor Rishi Sunak not to cut Universal Credit
Citizens Advice North Lancashire says that the proposed £20 cut to Universal Credit will have a devastating impact on people in Lancaster and Morecambe.
Along with other national and local charities, North Lancashire Citizens Advice is calling on the Chancellor Rishi Sunak to reconsider the decision to cut benefits at the end of March.
The £20 a week boost was added to Universal Credit to help struggling families during the coronavirus pandemic, but it is due to come to an end next month.
The charity is concerned that a high percentage of people living on the benefit in the district will be badly affected, leaving them unable to afford the basics, and more likely to get into debt, rent arrears and poverty.
Dave Andrew, a debt specialist at Citizens Advice North Lancashire, said: "We are really worried about what a cut in Universal Credit will do to some of our most vulnerable clients.
"Many clients are pushed into debt because they have to borrow an advance payment from the DWP to get through the initial five week wait for payment when they apply for the benefit.
"If Universal Credit is cut it's going to make things really tough for many of our clients who already struggle to pay their bills.
"With unemployment rising in this area and across the country, and jobs being scarce, this couldn't come at a worse time."
Citizens Advice North Lancashire is a charity with offices in Lancaster and Morecambe that offers advice to anyone who needs it, free of charge. The large team of staff and volunteers includes specialists in benefits, debt, housing, employment and legal rights and is currently operating remotely due to the pandemic. To get advice call 03444 889 622 or by email at [email protected]