South Lanarkshire next to received Tory welfare reform
The roll-out of the controversial Conservative UK Government Universal Credit reform continues as South Lanarkshire is set to receive the full service of the reform.
Universal Credit, which is designed to amalgamate six existing benefits including JSA and Housing Benefit, has been condemned by a range of welfare rights organisations and charities.
The roll-out, which hit South Lanarkshire on today [Wednesday 4th October], has been plagued with significant delays in payment processes, has resulted in a 6/7 week waiting period before any welfare is paid to a claimant.
Recently Citizens Advice Scotland joined forces with twenty four charities and individuals to call for a halt to the accelerated roll out of Universal Credit in October.
Speaking in a Scottish Parliamentary debate on the subject, Hamilton, Larkhall and Stonehouse MSP, Christina McKelvie said:
“The debate is timely and imperative. It is timely because my constituents—the people of Hamilton, Larkhall and Stonehouse, are next to receive the full roll-out of universal credit. Make no mistake: the debate is also imperative because the botched roll-out is, purely and simply, detrimentally affecting lives.
“Since the partial introduction phase of universal credit in South Lanarkshire, my constituents have faced a myriad of problems, from significant delays in their payments that have forced hundreds into arrears, hunger and destitution, to an incomprehensible help system.
“This decision has real consequences. For South Lanarkshire Council, they are to the tune of £4 million, which is the amount that it has had to put aside to mitigate the cost of the roll-out. That is a chronic waste of resources. That money could have been added to budgets for schools, houses, health and infrastructure.
“I, for one, will not allow the Tory pursuit of ideological welfare reform to jeopardise any of my constituents and I will fight tooth and nail to ensure that my constituents are provided for in their hour of need.”