Saving Our Safety Net Fact of the Week: quarter of a million people face five week wait for benefits

This month a new set of regulations means that more than a quarter of a million people claiming Jobseekeer’s Allowance and Employment and Support Allowance will have to wait seven days before they are entitled to any benefits. From next year, as Universal Credit replaces these benefits, most people who are unemployed or who are disabled or unable to work because of long-term sickness will face a wait of at least five weeks before they get their first money.

New evidence suggests that TUC fears about how people will cope are justified, with a large proportion of claimants turning to payday lenders. Read TUC’s Richard Exell’s blog at

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