£27m cut leaves London’s needy at risk, says London Councils

1 July 2015

Government plans to withdraw £27 million of emergency support risk harming the capital’s most vulnerable people and undermining the introduction of Universal Credit, London boroughs are warning in a report published today.

Thousands of Londoners have received essential food, bedding and clothing thanks to schemes funded by boroughs through emergency support known as local welfare provision (LWP). London Councils, which represents all 32 London boroughs and the City of London, says the withdrawal of funding for LWP from 2015/16 could leave some of the most disadvantaged Londoners without a safety net and struggling to navigate Universal Credit.

Around 850,000 Londoners are likely to qualify for Universal Credit, one of the most significant welfare reform policies in decades. Under Universal Credit, claimants will have to organise monthly payments, make and maintain claims online, and fulfil work commitments set out in a formal agreement.