New figures show 3,610 people claimed Universal Credit up to 30 November 2013 – as the national roll-out of the new benefit continues.
Universal Credit is now available to some new jobseekers in 7 sites across Britain and will be extended to Bath and Harrogate from Monday, 24 February 2014.
Minister for Welfare Reform Lord Freud said:
The steady roll-out of Universal Credit has led to over 3,600 people starting to receive the new benefit by November of last year.
Universal Credit will stay with these claimants as they move into jobs and is designed to make work pay.
Employment is growing to record levels as a part of the government’s long-term economic plan, and employers are telling me that Universal Credit will help them to grow and know that staff will no longer face benefit barriers for putting in extra hours.
Overall Universal Credit will see a benefit of £35 billion to the economy.
Universal Credit is now available for single new jobseekers in the Manchester area in Ashton-under-Lyne, Oldham, Warrington, and Wigan where the new benefit was rolled out early last year.
It is also available in Hammersmith, Rugby and Inverness and will be extended to Harrogate and Bath from Monday.
From this summer, Universal Credit will start to extend to couples and families, before expanding to more Jobcentres in the north west of England.
As a part of the cultural change Universal Credit will bring, 6,000 new computers are being installed in Jobcentres across the country, embedding digital technology and ensuring that jobseekers become used to online transactions.
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