An Open Letter to Worcestershire Elected Officials: Stop the Suffering – Cancel the Cut!

Ahead of the budget on Wednesday 3 March 2021, we are asking all elected officials and representatives in Worcestershire to demand that the Chancellor make the £20 a week Universal Credit uplift permanent. We also call for Age-Related Universal Credit rates to be scrapped and that both the Bedroom Tax and Benefit Cap are removed. If you would like to write to your MP about these issues, please go to our Google Doc for a template letter.

Dear Worcestershire MPs and Councillors,

With millions of people claiming Universal Credit it is simply immoral for the Government to even consider removing the £20 a week uplift from the benefit. As my elected represntative, you have a chance to speak up and ensure that this payment is made permanent. 

The pandemic has exposed and exacerbated our uneven economy and plunged even more people into poverty. Millions of people that have never engaged with the benefit system before are now claiming Universal Credit and coming to terms with the fact what is offered to those in need is abysmal.

Cutting the uplift would mean 6 million families in the U.K will lose £1,040 per year. In Worcester, there are 8,825 Universal Credit claimants to date, meaning a 120% increase in claimants since the outbreak of the pandemic. This means there is an annual estimated loss of £8,200,000 in Worcester alone if the uplift was removed. This just gives you a flavour for how removing the uplift is going to plunge families across Worcestershire into further financial problems.

These financial problems include tenants not being able to pay their rent. Even with the uplift in place, almost 445,000 private renting adults in England have fallen behind on their rent. This issue is aggravated by the fact people can lose up to 25% of housing support due to the bedroom tax, and be paid even less if they are subject to the benefit cap.

As your constituent we ask you write to the Chancellor demanding three things:

  • Make the £20 a week Universal Credit uplift permanent
  • Scrap Age-Related Universal Credit rates
  • End the Bedroom Tax and Benefit Cap

The Prime Minister said that we will get through this crisis together. With that in mind, you must stand by your community and ensure that your constituents have the means to keep a roof over their head and food in their stomach. We can’t fight a pandemic on the cheap.

Kind regards,

Worcestershire Transformed

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