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New mum's baby goes to foster home

Less than a week ago a young mum gave birth to a baby, which immediately went to a foster home.  The partner took their Universal Credit payment of £98 for the month to pay for travel to where the baby was going to help get them settled in and to stay overnight nearby.  The mother has applied for Universal Credit in her own name and requested an advance payment which she can use to get some suitable clothing post pregnancy.  She is currently staying with her mother and normally pays towards her rent and board but the mother has said she will manage without that this month until she gets back on her feet.  In the meantime though she has some post natal appointments she must attend as she is very vulnerable at the moment.  Plus her three other children are currently in foster care and she sees those regularly but does not have any money to pay for the transport to get to see them.  We agreed to send her £80 to cover that until her benefits payments come into payment.

Tags : DWP Benefits FosterCare ChildreninCare JobSeekers UniversalCredit

Family on Universal Credit forced to consider giving up family pet

One of our agents was contacted today by a man who lost his job in December last year.  He has applied for Universal Credit but is still waiting all these weeks later for it to be sorted out properly.  He has fallen into arrears on his rent and has no money for food for him or his family.  Fortunately they are being well supported by their local foodbank who are supplying them with food, but they have no cat food to give them.  With only one can of food left, he made the painful call to ask if their cat could be rehomed to somewhere that could afford to feed it.  (According to our agents lots of people are abandoning their pets because they don't have enough money to feed them). We organised some tins of supermarket cat food for him, enough to last the month, until hopefully his Universal Credit is finally sorted out, and an extra £20 for him to get some essentials with.

Tags : Benefits UniversalCredit Poverty Pets GivingupPets OutofWork JobSeekers RentArrears

Man with chronic anxiety being constantly sanctioned

We were contacted about a man who suffers with chronic anxiety who has been kicked off Employment Support Allowance, forced into applying for Job Seekers instead, and is now moved again, this time on to Universal Credit.  However he is subject to sanctions by the DWP which can be for reasons as simple as being held up and arriving late to sign on for example.  He is now on his fourth benefit sanction, is desperate for food, but has used up all his entitlement to food bank vouchers.  He also cannot get another welfare emergency payment from his council for another 12 months.  He has another month to run on his latest benefit sanction, so we agreed to send across £100 to tide him over until his benefits can restart again.

Tags : Benefits NoMoney UniversalCredit JobSeekers EmploymentSupportAllowance Sanctions

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