Many Whitby residents ‘will be hit hard’ by Universal Credit

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I endorse wholeheartedly the views on the impact of Universal Credit expressed by Cllr Barnett in last week’s Gazette (October 19).

Authorities currently rolling out Universal Credit are seeing many communities plunged into debt as a result of delays in payment.

Those who can least afford it are then subject to deductions to pay back the resulting rent, utility and council tax arrears.

Let us not forget that, according to the latest statistics, 40% of claimants are in work.

In our borough, where so much work is seasonal and low paid, we can be sure that many residents in Whitby will be hit hard.

No wonder a dramatic increase in those visiting food banks has been reported. Our citizens deserve better.

As Frank Field said: “This nationalised form of debt is fast becoming a main supply route to food banks.”

Heather Relf

Esk Terrace

Whitby