The number of people claiming Universal Credit in Kent in May has increased once again, as was expected, because of the coronavirus epidemic.
Between April & May 2020 the figures increased by 25% to 146,975
In April the number of claimants rose from 80,626 to 117,471 a 46% increase.
To put that into context that is more than the total population of Thanet (Kent) which stood at 141,819 as of mid 2018.
In two months, the number of people claiming Universal Credit rose by 66,349 driving up the overall Kent claimant count by 82% in two months as can be seen from the interactive graph below.
The chart below shows the numbers claiming UC at the Tonbridge JobCentrePluss Office rose by 42% in one month and the lowest was the Dover JobCentre at 13%.
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 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 June data is published by the DWP there will be another increase, though we reason not on the same scale as the last two months. Our gues is single digits, as the furlough scheme will have had time to take effect.
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 you can email email@example.com or phone us for free on 0800 027 0363 8am–7pm Monday to Friday and 9am-1pm Saturday.
The Shepwayvox Team
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