Response to Universal Credit changes

11 January 2019

In response to Amber Rudd’s speech today, in which the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions announced important changes to current proposals for Universal Credit, our Chief Executive Neil Heslop said:

‘I welcome Amber Rudd’s speech today on Universal Credit. It is a sign that we are potentially finally moving away from some of the most damaging aspects of Government welfare reforms.

‘Independent assurances that Universal Credit will not harm disabled people are still desperately needed. This includes more information on how the government will identify and support those with additional needs. Leonard Cheshire will continue to push for measures that ensure people do not face further financial hardship when moved to Universal Credit.

‘The benefits freeze has hit many working-age disabled people hard, such as those too ill to work who rely on employment support allowance.

‘There are 4.3 million disabled people living in poverty in the UK today, so we hope any changes will alleviate the additional costs and daily financial pressures this vulnerable group continue to face.

‘The level of benefits must in future meet civilised living standards and we shall continue to advocate for disabled people to have their basic rights respected.’

Media enquiries

For further information and interview requests, please contact: Claire Farrell on claire.farrell@leonardcheshire.org or 020 3242 0389.