Glamorgan Gazette Column | Chris Elmore MP
I would like to wish all Gazette readers a very happy New Year. I hope you all had a wonderful Christmas break and I hope you all have a brilliant start to 2018.
New Year is a time for evaluation and renewal for many. It’s a time where we can look forward with optimism and hope for the future. In light of this, I’d like to highlight an issue which I feel stands as a road block to prosperity across our communities in 2018.
The haphazard roll-out of Universal Credit must be paused before it reaches the job centres in our area. The new benefit is throwing individuals and families across our country into a state of significant uncertainty and until Universal Credit is fixed, the Government must stop bulldozing into our neighbourhoods.
Recently, I asked a Parliamentary Question to the Department for Work and Pensions to request the revised roll-out dates in job centres across Ogmore and I was mis-informed that it would happen in March 2018. Because the roll-out is being undertaken by job centre area and not by parliamentary constituency, some areas will receive full service in either June or November. This conflicting information coming out of the DWP just illustrates what a mess the government has made of this change to benefit payments. Adding a further level of uncertainty to people who are already struggling is both cruel and unnecessary. Rest assured that when the roll-out of Universal Credit does arrive, I will be on hand to assist any constituents who may be encountering difficulty with the DWP. You can always call my office on 01656 860 034 or email me via firstname.lastname@example.org.
On Christmas day this year, Shelter predicted that there would have been 128,000 homeless children across the UK. We must ensure that this is not the case at the end of 2018. I do fear, however, that the clumsy implementation of government policies such as Universal Credit risks pushing more people into poverty and destitution.
As your local MP, I will work hard every day of 2018 to ensure this does not happen to help everyone across the country feel optimistic about their future.
As always, please do get in touch should you require assistance with this issue or, indeed, with any other issue.