MP of­fers her phone to call ben­e­fits hot­line

The Scotsman - - Features - By CHRIS GREEN

A Scot­tish MP has made the phone in her of­fice avail­able to job-seek­ing con­stituents who need to call the govern­ment’s con­tro­ver­sial Uni­ver­sal Credit hot­line.

Danielle Row­ley, the Labour MP for Mid­loth­ian, said she had been con­tacted by peo­ple who were wor­ried about call­ing the num­ber due to its high rates.

Uni­ver­sal Credit claimants are charged 55p per minute to phone the helpline if they are us­ing a mo­bile, while from land­lines it is 9p per minute.

Jeremy Cor­byn raised the is­sue in Prime Min­is­ter’s Ques­tions ear­lier this week, say­ing it was “ab­surd” to charge peo­ple look­ing for work such high fees.

“If Theresa May and her govern­ment won’t fix the is­sues my con­stituents are fac­ing with Uni­ver­sal Credit, the very least they could do is to make the helpline free of charge,” Ms Row­ley said.

“I have been con­tacted by many con­stituents who are strug­gling with the new ben­e­fit, and as well as tak­ing up their cases, I can of­fer this prac­ti­cal help too. This is pol­i­tics on the front­line and I won’t turn any­one away who is in need of help and sup­port.”

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