Labour will use Brexit impact studies tactic in bid to force out Universal Credit reports

Posted On: 
5th December 2017

Labour will try to force the Government to hand over secret documents about the controversial rollout of the flagship Universal Credit system.

The UK data watchdog has urged the Government to release five of the reports already
PA Images

Shadow Ministers will use the same parliamentary tactic - known as a ‘humble address’ motion - as they did to force disclosure of the Brexit impact assessments, the Independent has reported.

Campaigners have argued the Universal Credit rollout has led to increased debt and even evictions from rental properties.

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The Government undertook a number of ‘Project Assessment Reviews’ about its implementation and data watchdog Information Commissioner has urged Ministers to release five of them.

They have so far refused to release the reports - which were drafted between 2012 and 2015 - but are expected to abstain on the suggested Labour motion.

Shadow Work and Pensions Secretary Debbie Abrahams said: “These reports could further expose the implementation flaws, design failures and the impacts of major cuts to Universal Credit, which is pushing people into poverty, debt and arrears.”

She added: “The Government should have abided by the Information Commissioner and released five of these reports into the public domain.

“Having already ignored Parliament’s unanimous approval of Labour’s motion to pause Universal Credit, the Government is now once again riding roughshod over the democratic process.

“Labour is calling for the release of this catalogue of failures on Universal Credit, to ensure that the lessons are learned from this Government’s mismanagement.”