The number of people claiming Universal Credit in Kent increased by the most since records began in April to reach almost 118,000 thousand, according to official figures capturing the onset of the coronavirus crisis.
To put that into context that is more than the population of Folkestone & Hythe District (Kent).
In a reflection of mounting job losses across the country, the Department of Work & Pensions said 36,845 people signed up for universal credit in April, driving up the overall Kent claimant count by 46% in a single month.
According to the DWP data UC claims rose from 80,626 claims in March 2020 to 117,471 in April 2020, a near 50% rise in people making claims.
To put that rise of 36,845 persons claiming UC in one month in Kent into context, that is more than the people of Dover (33,404) in the given area of the map.
The chart below shows the numbers claiming UC in Dartford rose nearly 60% in one month and the lowest was the Margate JobCentre in Thanet at 31.95%
The dramatic increase in unemployment would have been much higher without the government’s emergency wage subsidy scheme. About 400,000 jobs have been protected at about 40,000 companies in the opening weeks of the programme, in which the government pays 80% of workers wages up to £2,500 per month.
Unemployment is expected to steadily climb in Kent over the coming months as our county and all the others grapple with the deepest recession in more than three centuries.
The fallout from covid-19 on the economic front will take more time to fully emerge. We expect when the May data is published by the DWP there will be another significant increase.
If you find yourself having to make a claim we would strongly advise you collect together all your financial incomings (wages slips etc) and outgoings ( council tax, water, elecie, gas etc)
If you need to claim Universal Credit you can do so ⇒ here
If you need to understand what Universal Credit is, a good explainer can be found ⇒ here
Once accepted onto UC you can apply for Council Tax Reduction ⇒ here
You can also apply for a Discretionary Housing Payment to top up you rent for a max of 3 months ⇒ here
If on UC you can also apply for the Affinity Water Low Water Tariff you’ll need to supply supporting evidence and can make an application ⇒ here
Alternatively email us at firstname.lastname@example.org or phone us for free on 0800 027 0363 8am–7pm Monday to Friday and 9am-1pm Saturday.
The Shepwayvox Team
Stay At Home – Protect The NHS – Save Lives