Increase Legacy Benefits

It has been over a year since Chancellor Rishi Sunak increased Universal Credit by £20 a week but failed to give the same increase to those on legacy benefits, including Employment and Support Allowance (ESA), Income Support and Jobseekers' Allowance (JSA).

Write to your MP

Chancellor Rishi Sunak increased Universal Credit by £20 a week in April 2020 but failed to give the same increase to those on legacy benefits, including Employment and Support Allowance, Income Support and Jobseeker’s Allowance.

This call, started by the Disability Benefits Consortium (made up of over 100 disability organisations) is backed by over 120,000 members of the public and has also been called for by the Work and Pensions Select Committee and the Social Security Advisory Committee.

Ask your MP to back the call too.

Sign the petition

Over 120,000 people have signed the petition demanding the £20 weekly uplift to be applied to all that are in receipt of social security benefits. 

Add your signature and don’t leave disabled people behind.

More information about the campaign

While the Standard Allowance for Universal Credit was raised by £20 a week, legacy benefits were raised by just £1.35 a week; with the uplift therefore excluding some of the most vulnerable disabled people and lone parents with young children. We launched our #IncreaseLegacyBenefits campaign in response to this as there is no logical argument that these claimants need less to live on than Universal Credit claimants.

We have led opposition to it in conjunction with the Disability Benefits Consortium (DBC), a consortium of over 100 organisations, calling the Government’s decision to increase Universal Credit by £20 “discriminatory”, as millions of disabled people will not see an uplift. 

Impact

September 2021

We were disheartened at the news that the legal challenge had been postponed from late September due to a lack of judges, we hope the new dates in November will go ahead. We continue to campaign to #IncreaseLegacyBenefits. 

April 2021

We are now pursuing a legal challenge on this issue.

February 2021

We launched our first ever Write to your MP action and over 3750 emails have been sent to 98% of all MPs in the UK with at least one email in their inbox telling them about the issue.

More recently, the Lords Economic Affairs Committee have also supported our call.

June 2020

‘Please, do not leave anyone behind’ our message to the Prime Minister as disabled people continue to be discriminated against by not being given the same support as everyone else. This included a petition hand in video which we handed in to Chancellor Rishi Sunak virtually. Z2K’s video alone had 6.6k views and total twitter impressions for the tweet was 68,028. A tweet action was also shared by the general public 926 times. Our hashtag for the campaign trended on one other occasion.

The Social Security Advisory Committee has said “it is increasingly untenable for this group of claimants [people on legacy benefits] to be excluded”. tThe Work and Pensions Select Committee as well as a number of MPs have also called for the uplift to be introduced.

April 2020

Alongside a petition supported by MPs and the Shadow Work and Pensions Secretary, the DBC (including Z2K) released results of a survey of over 200 disabled people which found nearly all (95%) had seen an increase in their costs as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic. As a result, 92% admitted they were struggling with additional food costs – and others said they were having to find the money needed to pay people to collect food and medicine, and higher heating and water bills as they were forced to shield at home.

Press

This has been covered in over 140 titles, including in the following articles: MirrorExpressMirrorMorning StarExpressMirrorMirror, AOL, Yahoo! News Care AppointmentsBelfast TelegraphExpress and the The Amed Post