Hundreds of universal claimants every month in Glasgow risk losing out under the latest change to applying a MSP has warned.

New rules mean that people who claim through Citizens Advice Bureaux will not have the date of their claim protected from when they first give notice of claiming.

Many people who need assistance with applying online make more than one visit and could lose out on cash they are entitled to.

The change comes as up until March 31 local councils were funded by the DWP to provide digital support services and people could claim through local libraries and their date of claim was protected and payments backdated to the day they first sought support.

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However, Citizens Advice has now been funded with £4m to provide the support but their status does not allow the claim to be protected and claimants will need to have all the necessary information and documents for the claim to be active.

Bob Doris, Maryhill and Springburn SNP MSP raised the issue with Shirley Ann Somerville the Social Security Secretary at Holyrood.

Council officials confirmed with Mr Doris that many in the city will be affected by this.

Mr Doris has been told by the council it expects that many people will miss out on Universal Credit payment,s that already are seeing a delay before the first payment is made, and more people will experience poverty and destitution as a result.

Around 2000 people a month make a claim in Glasgow and the council estimates that 50% need support to make a claim.

And around 20% need a second visit to provide all the evidence and documents they need.

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Glasgow has a higher than average rate of people who do not have access to a computer or posesss the digital skills needed to make a claim.

Mr Doris, said: “The removal of this financial safeguard for some of my most vulnerable constituents is alarming and unacceptable.

“Glasgow City Council has said 200 Glaswegians will miss out every month because of this. Flaws in the Universal Credit system require to be fixed not made worse for the poorest in society.”

Ms Somerville, said: “This is another area where there are concerns over Universal Credit and its effect on people across Scotland.

There are many reasons why someone might not be able to make a claim on the day they are entitled to.

“For example, people might not have digital access.”

Mr Doris added: this may be a cynical attempt to save cash at the expense of my most vulnerable constituents.”

Mr Doris also noted that claims are protected if made at a Jobcentre.

However, he also noted that Maryhill Jobcentre along with five others in the city, where previously people could have had support making claims, have been closed by the DWP.


Mr Doris added: “The UK Government needs to quickly reverse this cash grab and I am sure our Social Security Committee will want to examine this matter further.