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Universal Credit protest held outside Maidenhead Town Hall

A small demonstration against the Government’s Universal Credit benefits system was held outside Maidenhead Town Hall on Friday.

The protest was organised by Slough Momentum, Unite the Union and Windsor and Maidenhead’s Labour parties and included a visit from MP for Slough Tan Dhesi.

Demonstrators objected to rent no longer being paid automatically to landlords under the new system, causing budgeting problems, particularly for those with mental health issues and addictions.

Protestors also objected to five week wait for first payments, although it is possible to get a loan in advance.

Protest organiser Paul Fuller says this means giving loans to people who are already struggling financially.

A Department for Work and Pensions spokeswoman said: “Universal Credit is replacing a complex, out of date benefit system.

“We are listening to people’s concerns as the benefit rolls out and recently announced a £4.5 billion cash boost.

“People can request that Universal Credit be paid more frequently, and rent can be paid directly to landlords.

“Budgeting support is also available for anyone who needs extra help.”

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