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Disability Benefits to rise by 35p a week

department for work and pensions head office
department for work and pensions head office Image credit: hertfordshiremercury.co.uk

Claimants of disability benefits will receive a rise this spring, but it won’t make a dramatic difference to their bank accounts.

Those receiving Jobseekers’ Allowance, Carers Allowance and Employment and Support Allowance (ESA) will be entitled to an extra 35p a week.

People on Statutory Sick Pay will have a 50p a week rise and the maximum Personal Independent Payment (PIP) will increase from £151.40 to £152.15.

The pay rises may seem adequate but when you compare them to the £4.40 a week increase for those claiming their New State Pension and the additional £20 a week for Universal Credit the new payments feel insufficient.

Shadow Employment Minister Seema Malhotra said it was “discriminatory and unfair" that people claiming legacy benefits are not entitled to similar rises as those on other payments.

However, Universal Credit allowance is planning to be cut from £409.89 to £324.84 a month, a move which has been denied by DWP minister Will Quince.

Quince said in Parliament this week: “They should be very careful with their use of emotive language and with what they say in this House.

“Because scaremongering in this house has real world consequences.”

Malhotra replied: “It is disingenuous for him to say we are scaremongering when all we are doing is highlighting the concern that families up and down the country have.

“The 0.5% increase on last year’s Universal Credit level will be academic to those who are set to see a cut - and it is a cut - to their Universal Credit of £20 a week from April.”

On Tuesday it was announced Universal Credit would rise from £323.22 to £324.84 a month, but the standard allowance is currently £409.89 because of an additional £20-a-week due to the COV-19 pandemic, this means if the £20 cut goes ahead people on UC will be £85.05 a month worse off.

The 35p rise to disabled benefits will be introduced on April 12.