Charities have reacted angrily after work and pensions secretary Esther McVey claimed that they had praised her department for “listening” on Universal Credit.
McVey was speaking in the House of Commons yesterday, and said that charities are now praising the department for listening to Universal Credit claimants and their representatives.
She cited seven charities – the Resolution Foundation, the Joseph Rowntree Foundation, the Trussell Trust, Mencap, the Child Poverty Action Group, Gingerbread and Mind.
All of those charities have been heavily critical of Universal Credit, but were positive about improvements in some aspects of the system, announced in the most recent Budget.
Three charities - Mind, the Trussell Trust and Gingerbread - pointed out that McVey's comments did not tally with their position. The others have not made any comment.
“We thought it was important to set the record straight,” Mind tweeted yesterday, shortly after McVey’s comments, before publishing several critical comments made over the last few weeks in a thread.
Yesterday the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions @EstherMcVey1 mentioned us in a list of organisations who had recognised and welcomed changes to #UniversalCredit. We thought it was important to set the record straight. pic.twitter.com/ATZqKqLHzO— Mind (@MindCharity) November 6, 2018
“This statement does not paint the full picture,” said Gingerbread, also in a Twitter thread.
And the Trussell Trust said it felt urgent changes were still needed.
THREAD: We’re being asked lots of Qs about what we think of #UniversalCredit today. To be clear: we use evidence from our #foodbank network to comment on the impact of policies & campaign for long-term change to protect people from hunger & poverty, & will continue to do so. 1/5 pic.twitter.com/ZvC7z9u9a9— The Trussell Trust (@TrussellTrust) November 7, 2018