Number of ex-servicemen on Universal Credit up by 50 percent | UK | News

The number of military veterans claiming benefits to cope with ­rising costs is soaring.

There are 50,000 former armed forces personnel receiving Universal Credit – up by 17,000 in a year, according to a study of government figures.

And the number of active personnel ­claiming help has increased to 3,800 this April, up from 2,500 a year earlier.

Labour suggested the number of veterans claiming Universal Credit has increased by 50 percent over the past year.

But there are fears the true number could be even higher, as employment minister Guy Opperman admitted the statistics cover only 63 percent of the Universal Credit caseload.

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This means up to about 80,000 could be on benefits. Former defence minister Alec Shelbrooke said: “The state has a bigger responsibility to those who signed up.

“People in the armed forces have unique circumstances compared to the rest of the civilian population.”

Veterans minister Johnny Mercer previously said former personnel had suffered years of underinvestment.

He announced an inquiry to look into the support given to them.

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