The number of people applying for benefits in April increased 70% to almost 2.1 million due to the coronavirus crisis.
With 856,500 more people applying for universal credit and unemployment benefits to job seekers in April 2020 compared to March, according to the Office for National Statistics (ONS) today.
⚠️ Read our coronavirus live blog for the latest news and updates
It appears that separate data released by the Ministry of Labor and Pensions (DWP) today reveals that there were 1.5 million requests for universal credit between March 13 and April 9, 2020.
This is more than six times more than the same period last year and the most in a single month since the launch of Universal Credit in April 2013.
DWP adds that it is seen 25,000 universal credit requests made every day since the start of the coronavirus epidemic.
Unemployment up 50,000
At the same time, unemployment figures jumped from 50,000 to 1.35 million in the three-month period ending in March, the ONS said.
It brings the British unemployment rate to 3.9%.
The retail, travel and hospitality sectors have been particularly hard hit by the coronavirus, with job cuts and wage cuts announced and some businesses down.
British Airways, for example, has announced that up to 12,000 jobs are to be cut while Ryanair is cutting up to 3,250.
On the main street, Debenhams entered the administration and Cath Kidston, Oasis and Warehouse have closed their doors permanently.
But the UK employment rate hit a record high in the first three months of the year with 76.6 per cent of the workforce.
However, the data only covers the very beginning of the coronavirus crisis, taking into account a single week of foreclosure, which began on March 23.
Workers on leave are also counted as employed by the NSO, although they are not working and receive at least 80% of their regular wages, up to £ 2,500 per month, under this program.
According to new data released today by HM Treasury, around 8 million people have so far been put on leave with £ 11.1 billion in wages claimed.
According to additional research, more than 6 million Britons could be out of work by the end of May due to the “horrific” impact of coronaviruses on jobs.
This means that 20% of Britons will be unemployed – five times the current rate of 3.9%.
Tony Wilson, director of the Institute for Employment Studies, warns that unemployment today should already be close to 3 million.
He said: “These figures give us the first official confirmation of what we have known for some time, that unemployment is now increasing faster than at any time in our lives.
“But at least the data today underestimates the depth of the crisis we are living in, as it only takes into account those who had managed to claim unemployment benefits by April 9, thus excluding many younger unemployed and more recent asylum seekers.
“In reality, unemployment is probably already close to three million today. “
The Sun wants to make universal credit work
UNIVERSAL Credit replaces six benefits with a single monthly payment.
One million people are already receiving it and by the time the system is fully deployed in 2023, almost 7 million will be equipped with it.
But there are big problems with the new flagship system – it takes five weeks to get the first payment and it could make some families worse by thousands of pounds a year.
And while working families can claim up to 85% of their child care costs, they have to find the money to pay for the child care costs up front – we’ve heard of families waiting up to 6 months for the money.
Parents who work across the country have told us that they have been unable to work more hours – or have even refused better paying jobs or more hours because of the amount they benefit from the reduction in their benefits.
It is time to make universal credit work. We want the government to:
- Get paid faster: The government must cut British wait times for their first universal credit payments from five to two weeks, preventing $ 7 million from going into debt.
- Keep more of what you earn:The work allowance should be increased and the reduction rate reduced from 63p to 50p, helping at least 4 million families.
- Don’t be punished for having a family: Parents should get 85 percent of the money they can claim for child care in advance, rather than being paid in arrears.
Together, these changes will help make universal credit work.
Join our Universal Credit Facebook group or send an email to [email protected] to share your story.
But Minister of State for the Department of Labor and Pensions Therese Coffey told Sky News this morning that leave helps keep people employed.
She said, “We know that the number of beneficiaries since March 16 has increased by about 2 million – reflecting the number of people who turn to the benefit system.
“But we can also recognize the success of the leave plan and how many people are still attached to their employers rather than leaving the workforce, and this has been an important element in helping us recover after we cross this path.” emergency. “
Coffey added, “Not all employers will have been able to lay off their employees.
“I’m not going to speculate on individual employers, but there are always costs to run businesses, not just wages.
“But nonetheless, DWP officials have done a great job in handling these claims to try to make sure that we get money to people as quickly as possible when they need it and this has been key to help families through this particular emergency. “
What is leave?
The goal of the government’s job retention program is to prevent one million workers from losing their jobs due to the closure.
Under this program, the government will pay 80% – up to £ 2,500 per month – of the salary of an employee who cannot work due to the impact of the coronavirus.
Workers will be kept on the payroll rather than being laid off.
The government will pay employers’ national insurance premiums for associated employers and additional retirement contributions for self-enrolled employers.
The program has been extended until the end of September (although companies will be invited to participate from August) and may be backdated to March 1, 2020.
It is available to all employees who have started a PAYE payroll system by March 1, 2020.
If you are between two jobs, have started in a new workplace or have been laid off after this date, you can ask your former employer to re-hire you to be eligible for the program.
Employers can choose to raise the wages of workers on leave by the remaining 20 percent, but they do not have to.
Companies wishing to access the program will need to speak to their employees before putting them on leave.
During their leave, staff must not undertake any work for their employer during the program.
Job vacancies drop to lowest level since 2001
With regard to vacancies, the ONS reveals that from February to April 2020 saw the largest quarterly drop in vacancies since data began to be collected in 2001.
In those three months, there were around 637,000 vacancies in the UK – down 170,000 from the previous quarter, and 210,000 fewer than a year earlier.
Separate research by a think tank, the Institute for Fiscal Studies (IFS), shows that by the time the foreclosure was announced, companies had almost completely stopped posting new vacancies.
He said new job openings on March 25 were just 8% of their levels in 2019.
Jonathan Athow, Assistant National Statistician for Economic Statistics at the ONS, said: “Although it only covers the first few weeks of restrictions, our figures show that Covid-19 has a major impact on the labor market.
“In March, employment held up well as workers on leave still count as employees, but hours worked fell sharply at the end of March, particularly in sectors such as hotels and construction.
Marks & Spencer ‘shoppers off’ with hand sanitizer £ 11.50
TAKE A BREAK
Can you still take a vacation while on leave and does it affect your salary?
How to Use Lockout to Reduce Your Auto Insurance Payments
Aldi is testing a new same day delivery service with Deliveroo
Aldi launches Harry Potter line that includes plush toys and bedding
“Until April, however, there were signs of declining employment, as real-time tax data shows that the number of employees on the corporate payroll has decreased significantly, and that vacancies have also declined sharply, with hospitality again strongest. “
Thomas Lawson, chief executive of the Turn2us charity, added: “The surge in demand for universal credit highlights the crisis many are experiencing.
“Unfortunately, our social security system is not suitable for this purpose. This is a significant concern, as the recession following the coronavirus continues into the summer months and beyond. “