Impact of Universal Credit in the Borders

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Universal Credit claimants in the Borders and local Department for Work and Pensions staff have told Borders MP John Lamont the new system is “better than they had to deal with before”.

After visiting a Borders Job Centre, Mr Lamont said: “Given all the reports in the press, it was reassuring to hear from those actually involved in Universal Credit that the system is working well.

“It is really important that the debate around Universal Credit is based on fact, rather than what people might have read in the newspapers.”

Councillor Tom Weatherston, SBC’s executive member for adult social care said: “Scottish Borders Council has been working with partners to ensure we were ready for this major reform.

“There is a lot of support available to help with applications for universal credit, either from your local council contact centres, your housing association or Citizen’s Advice Bureau. For claimants who are struggling after the transfer to Universal Credit, there is additional financial support: advance payments, crisis grants and community care grants. The important thing is not to ignore the situation.”