I have continued to press the Secretary of State for the utter shambles that is Universal Credit.
I am particularly concerned of an flaw in the system whereby a woman who is in employment, but for less than the 26 weeks needed for Statutory Maternity Pay from their employer is placed on Maternity Allowance. She will be no worse off at this point, but when she goes to apply for Universal Credit, Maternity Pay is counted as an unemployment subsidy and therefore doesn’t qualify women for the full entitlement of Universal Credit. People are worse off because of Universal Credit.
The UK Government need to learn that this new benefit is not working and they must rethink how it is implemented. Let us not forget that independent analysis shows that women are living with 87% of the burden of austerity under this government.
We were one of the first areas to see Universal Credit (UC) introduced. I have received hundreds of cases since then of people not getting the social security payments they are due.
This week the independent National Audit Office published a damning report stating how UC is failing and should not be rolled out any further until the flaws are sorted.
I have been telling the Government this for months. At today’s statement I pressed once again for more action to be taken to help people who live in rural areas get access to their payments. It is all well and good the Government saying that people should just pop into the local job centre but that is easier said than done if you live in the more rural parts of Flintshire.
I have become a co-signatory to the forthcoming Ten Minute Rule Bill to extend protections for service animals, such as police dogs.
Recently, a callous attack on police dog Finn took place and this has resulted in a growing number of people calling for a law to be put in place that increases sentencing and provides a stronger deterrent against future attacks on police animals.
Finn was extensively stabbed in the chest in course of his duty, in trying to apprehend a suspect and protect PC Dave Wardell, who suffered an injury too. Finn made a great recovery and returned to service. However, it was only possible to charge the accused with criminal damage – treating Finn as an object, or with animal cruelty which fails adequately to take account of his service duties. Read more “Becoming a co-signatory to Finn’s Law”