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Universal Credit: Removal of Uplift

Volume 700: debated on Monday 13 September 2021

11. What assessment she has made of the impact on levels of poverty of ending the £20 uplift to the standard allowance of universal credit. [R] (903381)

It is not possible to produce a robust estimate of the impact of removing the £20 uplift on poverty. That is particularly the case at the moment, given the uncertainty around the speed of the economic recovery and how it will be distributed across the population.

Cutting universal credit will cause misery for millions of people, including my constituent in Birkenhead, Jess, who says that the extra £20 a week means she no longer has to choose between a hot meal and a hot shower. On Wednesday, Unite the Union and Community members who, like Jess, rely on the uplift to stay afloat will be visiting Parliament. Will the Secretary of State commit to meet them, so she can hear for herself why the Government must cancel the cut?

The hon. Gentleman references cancelling the cut. As I said before, there is no cut because there is no financial saving. If this measure were to continue, the Treasury would need to find an extra £6 billion to £9 billion to fund the temporary uplift. It was always a temporary uplift to universal credit. As a result, the temporary uplift will continue as planned.