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Universal Credit: Veterans

Question for Department for Work and Pensions

UIN 11553, tabled on 1 June 2022

To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, how many veterans have been identified to be in receipt of universal credit in each month since September 2021.

Answered on

8 June 2022

The department began collecting the armed forces status on new Universal Credit (UC) claims from April 2021 and UC claimants declaring their work and earnings from June 2021. From July 2021, Jobcentre work coaches could add information if the claimant were known to be serving or a veteran and had not already provided their status.

The Department continues to look at what other opportunities might be available to better identify and record data on veterans on the Universal Credit system and has regular conversations with the Ministry of Defence (MOD). This is part of a much wider piece of work involving a number of Departments, including the MOD and the Office for Veterans’ Affairs, to improve the collection and use of data relating to veterans.

DWP’s network of 50 Armed Forces Champions (AFCs) and 11 Group Leads provide vital support to veterans and other members of the armed forces community. The AFCs have specific responsibilities for supporting members of the Armed Forces community and their role involves front line responsibilities including building staff capability within their districts, personally handling some claims, supporting veterans into work and helping resolve complex cases where necessary.

Every Work Coach can also support members of the Armed Forces community and their families, working in partnership with their Armed Forces Champions. In those areas where there are particularly high levels of demand, for example garrison towns, this will form a significant part of the work done in individual Jobcentres.

Data is currently only available for the latest month and at a national level. For assessment periods ending in April 2022, we held a response for approximately 45% of the UC caseload. From this data we have identified 33,800 UC claimants who have previously served in the Armed Forces.

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