The March 2021 Budget statement, delivered by the Chancellor today committed to extending the £20 per week uplift to Universal Credit for a further six months and providing a one-off payment of £500 for Working Tax Credit. However the Chancellor was silent on any additional support for the 2.5 million people on legacy benefits, the majority of whom are disabled people.
Anastasia Berry, Policy Manager at the MS Society and Policy Co-Chair of the Disability Benefits Consortium, says: “It is outrageous that over 1.9 million disabled people on legacy benefits, including Employment and Support Allowance and Jobseekers Allowance, have been refused the same financial lifeline those on Universal Credit have been getting for nearly a year. How the Chancellor can stand up and say the Government’s response to COVID-19 has been “fair, with the poorest households benefitting the most” – when so many vulnerable are having to chose between heating their homes or eating – is beyond us.
“Government excuses so far have been at best feeble, and at worst actively insulting to those being pushed further into poverty. They must give people on legacy benefits the £20 per week uplift, and end this discrimination against disabled people immediately.”
Find out more about our campaign to #IncreaseLegacyBenefits here