Teddy W on 27 July 2021

I joined Universal Credit in August 2020 so even though I'm aware the £20 extra is in there to me this is my normal support. I worry about the future when I'm looking to another long hard cold winter with £20 a week less to live on. It stresses me and creates anxiety when I think about how I will manage. I'm fairly good with my money, I make it last, I never have a penny left once everything essential is paid. Taking this £20 away from myself and my child could mean I can't afford to pay the extra for my rent driving me into rent arrears or I won't be able to pay for oil to heat our home. There is a minimum order of £100 and that's only essentials. My car I'm already falling behind on its maintenance and I need it for my work as a childminder but it may have to go. I live in a rural village where public transport is sparse enough. Myself and my child would be further isolated away from society, I would have to shop local cutting me off from affordable choices such a red label discounted food products. I don't drink, smoke or socialise as I can't afford to, cutting me further off I worry about my own mental health, I'm already at counselling because of depression and pain management this will just compound it even more as I'm already balancing on a tightrope. I want the government to really think hard about this. £20 a week for me and my child so I don't have to rely on charity food banks, I can keep my car and have heating and food, I can have a little dignity and keep trying to get my foot up the ladder out of the big dark abyss of Universal Credit but this feels like I've a foot on my head pushing me down again because I don't deserve a chance. A chance to even try to improve my life to get out of this rut and become self reliant.

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