Nearly a third of disabled claimants relying on universal credit – around a million people – say they are “very likely” to have to skip meals or go without heating this winter.
More than one in five households with full-time carers also reported similar concerns over affording the essentials in the colder months following the universal credit cut, which reduced 5.2 million people’s incomes by £1,040 per year.
The Big Issue previously heard that food banks are facing the biggest crisis of the pandemic so far this winter with a record-breaking surge in demand expected.
In anonymous texts sent to the Trussell Trust and displayed on a mobile screen stationed outside Westminster, claimants described the impact of reduced payments and pleaded with the chancellor to reinstate the £20 increase.
“Poverty grinds away at your self-esteem and makes children feel worthless,” one person wrote. “Can you imagine not being able to take your child to the park because you can’t afford a bus fare?”
The food bank network worked with YouGov to survey more than 2,000 adults who were claiming universal credit in August.