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More than 50 charities urge chancellor to make Universal Credit increase permanent

More than 50 charities and organisations have signed a letter asking the chancellor to permanently increase Universal Credit benefits by £20 a week. The £20 uplift was introduced by the government at the start of the pandemic, and is meant to be a temporary measure lasting until the end of the financial year, in April 2021. But charities are now asking for the change to be made permanent and for it to be extended to people on benefits that pre-date the Universal Credit scheme, in a letter coordinated by Joseph Rowntree Foundation. Together with major homelessness and poverty charities such as Shelter and the Salvation Army, a wide range of organisations supporting different causes signed the 

letter, including children’s charities, disability groups and health charities. Macmillan Cancer Support, Barnardo’s, Mind and the Lloyds Bank Foundation for England & Wales are among them.

300,000 children pulled into poverty

The letter comes in response to Rishi Sunak’s economy statement last week. When announcing the new Job Support Scheme, the chancellor said that he “cannot save” every business or every job.

The letter says: “Your statement last week made clear that many families will see job losses over the months to come.”

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