Citizens Advice has called for the rollout of the controversial universal credit scheme to be put on hold, amid claims it is ‘pushing’ people into debt. In a new report – Delivering on Universal Credit – the charity claims more than a third of people are waiting more than the six weeks it should take to receive their first payment. And one in 10 are waiting more than 10 weeks to receive the benefit. The universal credit all-in-one payments system has been plagued with controversy since it was first introduced in October 2016. It merges six existing benefits into one – including tax credits, housing benefit and employment and support allowance (ESA). And by 2022 over 7 million households will receive universal credit and new Citizens Advice analysis reveals over half (54 per cent) of these will be working households. The chief executive of Citizens Advice, Gillian Guy, said it … (To read the full article, subscribe below)


Jamie Hailstone is senior reporter – NewStart