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Five People, Five Reforms: Strengthening Universal Credit after the Pandemic

This report, the last in a three-part series on UC during the pandemic, sets out what lessons can be learned from the past 18 months to future-proof UC. Updating and contextualising our survey with data drawn from the Citizens Advice network across Scotland, this report outlines the fixes that are needed for UC to properly support five groups of people who seek advice from CAB every day:

> People who are newly out of work
> People who are looking for work
> People who are in work
> People who are unable to work due to caring responsibilities or a disability
> People with children

Citizens Advice Scotland is calling for:

> Safe access to UC by introducing a non-repayable assessment period grant at the beginning of all UC claims and replacing the DWP’s debt recovery process with a revised system that better reflects people’s ability to pay
> A permanent increase to the basic allowance of UC
> A review of UC as an in-work benefit, including reintroduction of Work Allowances for everyone, to make sure UC properly supports those in employment
> Protecting and uprating support for people with disabilities and caring responsibilities
> Scrapping the benefit cap and the two-child limit

David Scott
Publication date
January 2022
Publication type