Number of people on Universal Credit in the East Riding at highest level since October

The number of people on Universal Credit in the East Riding is at its highest level since October, new figures show.

By Will Grimond (Data Reporter)
Wednesday, 25th May 2022, 9:31 am
Universal Credit is a monthly payment available to those on low incomes and those out of work. Photo: PA Images
Universal Credit is a monthly payment available to those on low incomes and those out of work. Photo: PA Images

Universal Credit is a monthly payment available to those on low incomes and those out of work. The exact amount varies on people’s circumstances, but it is currently worth around £335 a month for a single person over 25.

According to provisional Department for Work and Pensions data from April 14, 19,779 people were receiving Universal Credit in the East Riding – the highest number since October.

Universal Credit has come under scrutiny in recent months, as the rising cost of basic household goods and energy has driven some to call for the rate to be increased, or for it to be made more widely accessible.

The chief secretary to treasury Simon Clarke has ruled out reinstating the £20-a-week uplift to the benefit, which was temporarily introduced during the pandemic – a policy recently called for by other Conservative MPs.

Figures from February show that 48% of households receiving Universal Credit in the East Riding are families with children, including 5,333 single-parent households.

According to the latest figures, from March, 44% of people on Universal Credit in the East Riding were in employment.

Across Great Britain there were 5.6 million people receiving Universal Credit as of April 14, up 35,000 from January 13, but down from a peak of 6 million people in March 2021.

Provisional data shows 162,000 people started receiving the benefit in the month to April 2022, 25% more than the 122,000 starts made in the month to December.

A spokesperson for the Department of Work and Pensions said: “Universal Credit provides a vital safety net to 5.6 million people and we want everyone to get the support to which they’re entitled.

“We recognise the pressures on the cost of living and we are doing what we can to help, including spending £22 billion across the next financial year to support people with energy bills and cut fuel duty.”