There’s just ten weeks to go now before the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) introduces Universal Credit (UC) to Fleetwood and Over Wyre.
If you’re currently receiving working tax credit you’ll be moved over to the new system of UC at the beginning of December. Universal Credit will replace six benefits and credits into a single monthly payment if you are on a low income or out of work. It can include support for the costs of housing, children and childcare, as well as support for disabled people and carers. It merges Income support, income related jobseeker’s allowance, income related employment support allowance, housing benefit, working tax credit and child tax credit.
Once it’s introduced claimants will be expected to manage their payments online and this is causing concern locally.
A significant number of people don’t have a computer or don’t know how to use one.
If you’re eligible for UC and are worried about managing your account digitally or know someone who will struggle then help is available.
A digital hub has been created at Fleetwood market, providing internet access to anyone who requires it in order to make a claim for UC. The hub is staffed by both Citizen’s Advice Bureau staff and volunteers. There are also computers and training courses available at Fleetwood Library and more details are available from the Job Centre in Fleetwood.
Over at Poulton, the council says there are ‘digital champions’ and computers available at the Civic Centre.
If you’re still concerned then please feel free to contact my team on 01253 490440.