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Monday, October 15, 2012

Millions "better off" with new benefit, says AM

North Wales Assembly Member Mark Isherwood claims 2.8 million people will be better off under the UK Government’s Universal Credit.
Questioning the Minister for Finance in the Senedd over Welsh Government engagement with the UK Government in relation to Universal Credit, Mr Isherwood (pictured left) emphasised that Universal Credit will lift around 900,000 children and adults of poverty.
He also asked the Minister: “What engagement has the Welsh Government had with the UK Government on the design of the Universal Credit, with regard to which the UK Government has pledged that claimants who are not yet ready to budget for themselves on a monthly basis will be protected and assisted onto the new system?”
Speaking outside the Chamber, Mr Isherwood, who earlier this year welcomed news that Universal Credit, as well as being simpler for people to use, will leave the average household £25 better off a week, added: “These reforms are not about saving money. The UK Government are actually spending £2 billion more on Universal Credit than under the current system.
"They are also investing an additional £300 million into childcare support under Universal Credit, on top of £2 billion already spent under the current system. This will mean that around 80,000 more families with children will benefit from childcare support for the first time by removing the hours rule.
"Universal Credit is the most radical redesign of the benefits system this country has ever seen. It will replace the current costly, outdated process with a digital system that will be simpler to use and make work pay.”

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