Extended DAF flexibilities to support low income families in Wales

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Photo by Gabe Pierce on Unsplash

Insight

At the start of the pandemic, the Welsh Government adapted the criteria for awarding cash grants for essential living costs (EAPs) so that they could better support people affected by Covid restrictions. As of August 2021, almost 220,000 Covid-related cash grants for essential living costs (EAPs) had been made via the Discretionary Assistance Fund (DAF), paying out nearly £15million to households in need. However, the number of awards had decreased sharply over summer 2021.

Idea

With the changes to DAF due to come to an end on 30th September and the continuing pressure on household finances, the Bevan Foundation, alongside the Child Poverty Action Group, raised concerns. We published a State of Wales special on Universal Credit with supporting facts and figures, and put forward questions for the Welsh Government to address to ensure thousands of Welsh families were not left without an adequate safety net over the autumn.

Impact

The findings of the Bevan Foundation’s State of Wales special on Universal Credit were discussed during Plaid Cymru’s September 2021 debate on Universal Credit.  We were delighted with the Minister for Social Justice, Jane Hutt MS’, announcement on 15th September 2021 that the Welsh Government had decided to extend the adaptions made to DAF until the end of March 2022, ensuring that more low income families in Wales receive vital support. 

 

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