Tories refuse to help Universal Credit claimants left dangling due to coronavirus

Thousands upon thousands of formerly-working people are learning the realities of the UK benefit system, after being told by the Tories to wait months before their first benefit payment.

If they hoped the Tories would speed up the four-week assessment period for Universal Credit – because of the coronavirus crisis and the cash crisis it has created for millions – they thought wrong.

And they need to remember that they won’t get paid until a week after the assessment period ends; it’s a five-week total wait.

The Tories could make the wait shorter – but they won’t.

The usual excuse is that UC is supposed to mimic the salary system in which people get paid once a month (except of course we know that many people are paid weekly, or fortnightly).

The current excuse, sported by UC director general Neil Couling is “If you play about with the architecture of Universal Credit you won’t be able to pay the vast millions we have to pay every month.”


It’s an automatic system. If you qualify, you qualify – and it can pay you straight away.

It doesn’t, because the Tory system is to make you wait; to push you far enough to take out an advance loan that will take months to pay off; to push you into permanent debt.

It seems the coronavirus is a perfect opportunity to get 1.4 million people (at current count) servicing a needless debt for months to come.

Hopes new Universal Credit payments could be made faster have been dashed after the Government said the four-week assessment period was ‘integral’ to the benefits system.

Many campaign groups had been hoping for an accelerated process to help alleviate the pressure families found themselves under after the coronavirus outbreak forced businesses to close and people to stay at home as part of the lockdown.

Speaking at a press briefing, Universal Credit director general Neil Couling said: ‘If you play about with the architecture of Universal Credit you won’t be able to pay the vast millions we have to pay every month.’

Source: ‘No chance’ wait for Universal Credit payments can be shortened | Metro News

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5 thoughts on “Tories refuse to help Universal Credit claimants left dangling due to coronavirus

  1. Jeffrey Davies

    We cried we shouted out but many ignored our cries now it’s your turn to find out there isn’t a benefit system but a bloody big stick to beat you with welcome to Britain benefits system if you can get anything from them

  2. trev

    And so foodbanks continue to bear the brunt of a failed State. At the foodbank here we have 50% of our volunteers away isolating but simultaneously had a 75% increase in referrals. Feeding people has become a National emergency.

  3. Justin

    well this will be remembered, remember the tory mantra the compassionate party, let me quote a part of there compassion from david gauke in conservative home, my shop had some empty shelves, volunteers could go and stack them, here m view on this, if that is what you think of volunteers stuff you, pay for the privilege and working rate, retrospectively summer recess, two weeks holiday, the rest going out into the voluntary sector doing work that your voter’s choose for you.

    next, new laws, about time this happen, lets reform this 18th century workshop into a modern one, get rid of this robe rubbish, get rid of this were in parliament we can do whatever we like, get rid of subsidied food, drink, there booze cellar, 2nd homes, unnecessary expenses, infact set there expenses allowance in line with voluntary sector, bring in news laws that cover accountability and responsibility, let me explain that in detail, your department policy is your policy, if there Is a issue with it, you have one chance to correct it, I f after that chance you carry on then your in court on a charge of misconduct in public office, if there is a death caused by your policy and that can include negligence with that, then the charge of that is included in the same way as would be treated within law, in short, your given a chance, you ignore it, you go to court, if your found guilty your going inside, end of, then when you have people that think there can do whatever they like and not give a damn, that will be good because they be in prison learning the errors of there ways, when all this is over tories carry on like they are, then they just have to face the consequences

  4. Julia

    “If you play about with the architecture of Universal Credit you won’t be able to pay the vast millions we have to pay every month”‘

    I can only say wow Mr Director General Couling. I have got so used to constant lies and obfuscation by the Government that almost nothing surprises me these days, but that is a little gem!

    Perhaps there may be a tiny silver lining in the ‘perfect storm’ that is currently brewing, in that it might perhaps bring an illuminating moment and change of attitude to the large swathes of the public who fell hook line and sinker for the ‘lazy scroungers’ line, but who now have to navigate the cruel Kafkaesque DWP themselves?

    I am sorry if that sounds heartless. I fully understand what terrible times some people are living through and sadly it will no doubt get worse, but far too many people have been living through terrible times for the last 10 years.

  5. Helen Maddock

    If UC is not capable of paying everyone, without the 5 week waiting period, who is entitled to it as stated by its own director general Neil Couling then surely this proves that the system is NOT fit for purpose.

    I notice that he gives no credible reason for this damning statement.

    It is my hope that this will focus EVERYONES attention on the arduous process of claiming UC whilst so many people are being forced into this alternative income stream so that when “normality” resumes it benefits the remaining claimants, who have no choice, can benefit from change made to this inherently punitive, dangerous and appalling situation.

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