Today, we've released a new report that lays bare the consequences of the five week wait for Universal Credit.
Food banks in the Trussell Trust network have long been sounding the alarm about the problems caused by the move on to Universal Credit and, in particular, the five week wait. This report reveals the acute, and often persistent, financial hardship the wait causes, pulling people into debt, homelessness and destitution.
Our benefits system is meant to anchor people from being swept into poverty. But as this report shows, it's not doing its job. Our data shows that in areas where Universal Credit has been in place for at least a year, food banks in the Trussell Trust network saw a 30% increase in referrals 12 months after Universal Credit rolled out.