To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what assessment her Department has made of the potential effect of removing the uplift to the universal credit standard allowance on food bank usage.
This answer is the replacement for a previous holding answer.
20 July 2021
No assessment has been made.
Universal Credit has provided a vital safety net for six million people during the pandemic, and we announced the temporary uplift as part of a £400 billion package of measures put in place that will last well beyond the end of the roadmap. Our focus now is on our multi-billion Plan for Jobs, which will support people in the long-term by helping them learn new skills and increase their hours or find new work.
Foodbanks are independent, charitable organisations and the Department for Work and Pensions does not have any role in their operation. There is no consistent and accurate measure of food bank usage at a constituency or national level.
We recognise the data limitations in this area, so from April 2021 have introduced a set of questions into the Family Resources Survey (FRS) on food bank usage. The first results of these questions are expected to be published in March 2023 subject to usual quality assurance.