Universal Credit ‘needs to be scrapped, not stalled’

Sinn Féin MLA Karen Mullan has said that Universal Credit should be scrapped, not stalled after the British Government confirmed that the next stage of rolling out the controversial welfare benefit is to be scaled back to 2024.

Friday, 7th February 2020, 8:54 am
Foyle Sinn Fein MLA Karen Mullan

Karen Mullan said that this latest move by the British Government is “further evidence that Universal Credit is simply not fit for purpose”.

“It was supposedly designed to simplify the benefits system but the roll-out so far has clearly shown that it is riddled with faults, complications and delays,” she said.

“And while the mitigation measures secured for the North have gone some way to alleviating the worst aspects of Universal Credit, the fact remains that people are suffering hardship and poverty as a result of this disastrous policy.

“They need to start listening and stop ignoring the evidence on the ground that Universal Credit has been a disaster. Stalling it won’t fix it. Delaying it won’t bring people out of poverty. It needs to be scrapped altogether.”

Ms. Mullan earlier this week also welcomed confirmation by Communities Minister Deirdre Hargey and the Executive that welfare reform mitigations for the north are being extended.

This was tantamount to “effectively binning the bedroom tax in the north”, protecting 38,000 homes, she said, adding: “The bedroom tax is an unfair and unjust Tory policy designed to punish the poorest and most vulnerable in society.”