UNEMPLOYMENT CLAIMANT NUMBER INCREASES BY 147% MARCH-APRIL, IN HARROGATE & KNARESBOROUGH.
LIBERAL DEMOCRATS CALL FOR MORE SUPPORT AND END TO FIVE-WEEK WAIT FOR UNIVERSAL CREDIT.
No one in Harrogate & Knaresborough should be left to rely on food banks and friends to get by.
Liberal Democrats are urging the Government to extend income support for self-employed workers as official statistics have revealed the number of people claiming unemployment benefit in Harrogate & Knaresborough increased by 147% between March 2020 and April 2020.
Acting leader of the Liberal Democrats Ed Davey MP, who is asking the public to join his campaign to protect workers, warned “thousands of families face financial hardship” and called for the Government to do more.
According to the Office for National Statistics, the number of people claiming unemployment benefit in the UK is now at 2.1 million This is an increase of 856,500 during the first month of the Covid-19 pandemic.
The Liberal Democrats are also calling for more support for those reliant on Universal Credit and an end to the 5-week wait for benefits, by raising benefit rates, abolishing sanctions and turning day-one Universal Credit loans into grants.
Acting Leader of the Liberal Democrats, Ed Davey MP, said:
“The Coronavirus crisis is leaving the most vulnerable at risk. Thousands of families face financial hardship and people are rightly worried.
“The furlough scheme has rightly helped protect jobs but there are still millions of people that need help. That’s why Liberal Democrats are urging the Government to prevent further redundancies by extending income support for self-employed workers.
“Ministers must also not be allowed to forget the unacceptable five-week wait for universal credit support. The Government must end this wait by raising benefit rates, abolishing sanctions and turning day-one Universal Credit loans into grants.”
Judith Rogerson, Liberal Democrat Spokesperson for Harrogate & Knaresborough, added:
"No one in Harrogate & Knaresborough should be left to rely on food banks and friends to get by. The five weeks that people have to wait before they get their universal credit payment is unjustifiable given the hardship it causes.
“We must ensure no one is left behind as we tackle this virus. To maintain any credibility and help the most in need, the Government must urgently resolve the gaps in their plans for those who are self-employed or claiming benefits.”