Rishi Sunak urged to reconsider upcoming benefit cuts

Rishi Sunak

Charities and housing groups have come together to warn that the UK’s Covid recovery is threatened due to the cuts to Universal Credit and the freezing of Local Housing Allowance

Chancellor Rishi Sunak is being urged to reconsider the government’s upcoming benefit cuts, which could threaten the UK’s financial response to the pandemic.

Various organizations have come together to warn that the UK’s Covid recovery is “threatened” due to the cuts to Universal Credit and the freezing of Local Housing Allowance, and that many Britons will suffer as a result of the reforms.

Charities and housing groups including The Big Issue Ride Out Recession Alliance, Crisis, The Mortgage Works, Nationwide Building Society, the National Residential Landlords Association, Propertymark, StepChange Debt Charity, and Shelter are raising public awareness.

They issued a unified statement urging the government to reconsider its proposed reforms to the benefit system.

The UK Government must complete and publish a detailed evaluation of the impact on tenants of their policies to freeze Local Housing Allowance and slash Universal Credit, which threatens to push many households into poverty, problem debt, and homelessness, the organizations said.

In the aftermath of the epidemic, the government took strong and rapid action to prevent a housing debt crisis, including raising the Universal Credit Personal Allowance and restoring Local Housing Allowance rates to the 30th percentile of market rents, they said.

To support their argument, they cited the Department of Work and Pensions (DWP) statistic indicating the number of private rented households receiving the housing element of Universal Credit jumped by 107% between February 2020 and February 2021.

As of February 2021, more than 55% of these families (858,606) had a gap between their housing cost support and the rent they had to pay, resulting in 858,606 households being affected, according to statistics from the DWP’s StatXplore website.

Moreover, the organizations demonstrated why freezing and eliminating key benefits at the same time will disproportionately affect renters.

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