New Universal Credit call follows savings survey
Over a quarter of people in Sunderland do not expect to be able save money over the next year as a result of the coronavirus pandemic.
A Office for National Statistics survey found 29% of those aged over 16 say they will have no spare cash – slightly lower than the national average of 31%.
The largest proportion of people in the city (52%) thought they would be able to save over the next year – above the average of 49% – while a further 16% said they didn’t know.
The results of the poll, carried out between January 7 and March 28, were based on responses from 230 people in the area.
Sara Willcocks, head of external affairs at anti-poverty charity Turn2us, said: "It is concerning that so many of us are unable to save any money in the near future.
"We urge the Government to take action to help increase people's incomes, to stop the debt crisis that is round the corner, and the mental health anguish that will follow.”
She said this must include maintaining the £20 uplift to Universal Credit – put in place to help struggling households during the pandemic but due to end in September.
A Government spokesman said: “Work remains the best route towards prosperity and that’s why we’re focusing on supporting people back into employment through our comprehensive Plan for Jobs.
“The Government has always been clear the Universal Credit uplift was a temporary measure to help those most impacted by the economic shock of the pandemic.”