Following numerous claims that 10,000 Scottish people will be left ‘penniless’ at Christmas due to the implementation of Universal Credit link, Michelle Ballantyne, MSP for South Scotland, wants to set the record straight regarding Universal Credit claims.
The First Minister, Nicola Sturgeon, also made this claim at First Minister’s questions on Thursday, saying that it was “utterly disgraceful” that those applying for Universal Credit right now would not receive any money until after Christmas link.
The Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) have explicitly highlighted that this is not the case. If you require immediate support a 100 per cent advance on payments are available from the first day.
The SNP’s Social Security Secretary, Shirley-Anne Somerville, has criticised the advance payments- as they need to be paid back from future payments- although, she has acknowledged they exist for those who need money urgently link.
Michelle Ballantyne, who is the Scottish Conservatives spokeswoman for Social Security, wants to clarify any confusion and ensure that those needing Universal Credit are aware of the options available to them.
Michelle Ballantyne MSP commented:
“It’s unfortunate to hear claims that people won’t be able to access Universal Credit by Christmas as it simply isn’t true, and it’s incredibly important that people know that.
“If anybody requires money urgently, the system offers you up to a 100 per cent advance on the benefit payments you’re due.
“Although this money is deductible from future benefit payments you may receive, it can provide a much needed injection of funds at this time of year.
“Your work coach should be able to help you with your application, however, as a constituent anyone from East Lothian is welcome to contact me if they require any further assistance.”