Universal Credit: SAL gives evidence to Parliament
On 10 January 2019, SAL chief executive John Blackwood was at Holyrood giving evidence to the Scottish Parliament Social Security Committee’s first meeting of the year. As part of a discussion on housing and social security including the impact of Universal Credit (UC) in Scotland, John represented the views and experiences of SAL member landlords who have expressed to SAL their grave concerns about UC.
Key statistics from the Committee agenda:
As at Aug 2018, there were 454,629 claimants of housing support in Scotland, of which 392,989 receive housing benefit (HB) and 61,640 receive the housing element of UC.
81% (368,249) of those receiving housing support through the benefit system live in the social rented sector. 19% (86,379) live in the private rented sector.
HB/UC are means tested. About one tenth of HB claimants are in employment.
HB expenditure in Scotland is around £1.7bn.
The average weekly HB award is £93 a week for tenants living in private rented housing.