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Policy and Campaigns Manager at Mind, Paul Spencer, says:
“It is only right the Secretary of State for the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) is acknowledging the link between Universal Credit and poverty. It’s appalling people are being pushed into destitution when trying to access support from our social security system, as evidenced by the Trussell Trust reporting on the numbers of people relying on foodbanks.
“Amber Rudd must act now to prove how the DWP will prevent people facing delays to payments under this new scheme and remove the risk that people who are unable to make a claim will be left with no income at all. Many people with mental health problems need support from the benefits system and are understandably concerned about moving over from older disability benefits onto Universal Credit.
“The pilot for moving people onto Universal Credit still does not address these fundamental concerns. Unless the DWP make these changes and guarantee no one will be left without an income, we fear too many people including those with mental health problems will see their benefits stop entirely and risk even greater dependency on foodbanks, as well as problems paying their bills and keeping a roof over their heads.”