STATISTICS for the number of people living on Universal Credit in Gwent have been revealed.

According to data released by the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP), more than 29,000 people are on Universal Credit in Gwent.

In Newport, 9,337 people are now said to be on Universal Credit, while 7,868 people in Caerphilly are claiming it. In Torfaen 6,157 people have switched to Universal Credit, while 3,975 people in Blaenau Gwent and 2,345 people in Monmouthshire are also thought to be claiming.

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Universal Credit, which is available in every job centre across the UK, was introduced in 2013 in an attempt to simplify the benefit system and replace six previous benefits with a single monthly payment. But the introduction of the system was dogged with problems, with claimants reporting having to wait weeks for their first payment.

The Department for Work and Pensions has said that Universal Credit is helping more people get into work quickly.


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Minister for Welfare Delivery Will Quince said: “Universal Credit is a force for good and provides a vital safety net for people who are out of work or on low wages across Wales. Significant improvements have been made in the past year, such as providing extra support for families reporting childcare costs reducing deductions, and we will continue to work towards improving the service.

DWP Group Partnership Manager Huw Thomas

“This Government believes that finding work is the best route towards prosperity and under Universal Credit more people are better off by moving into work faster and staying there for longer.”

As a result of cuts, many claimants have reported that they are worse off under the Universal Credit system, while a spike in homelessness has also been attributed to the increase in the amount of people who are having to move onto the system.

Huw Thomas, DWP Group Partnership Manager for Wales said: “Unlike the old system, Universal Credit is a flexible benefit that can be tailored to an individual’s needs and circumstances. It is helping to transform lives right across Wales ensuring people have more control over their working lives and finances.”

For more information on Universal Credit, speak to your nearest job centre.