Coalfield Communities Continue To Struggle Admist Growing Challenges

Research commissioned by The Coalfields Regeneration Trust shows that 39,000 individuals, couples and families in Scotland’s coalfield communities will be negatively impacted by cuts in Universal Credit 

To mark the end of ‘Challenge Poverty Week’, Coalfields Regeneration Trust (CRT) has commissioned a report to understand the impact of benefit changes in Scotland’s mining communities. The detailed report provides a clear assessment of the removal of the top-up to Universal Credit and its potential impact.

Delivered by Social Value Lab (SVL) the report provides a detailed picture of socio-economic conditions and demographic trends in the Scottish coalfield areas. Although coalfields have come a long way in recent years, with the support of organisations like CRT, job employment has worsened with few jobs available particularly in higher skill, highly paid professions and knowledge-intensive sectors of the economy.

The recent report found:

  • 39,000  individuals, couples and families in coalfield communities will be impacted by cuts in Universal Credit
  • At least 27,000 children living in coalfield communities will be affected by the cuts in Universal Credit
  • 17,000 coalfield communities’ families with children will see a reduction in their Universal Credit
  • Coalfield communities have one third more Universal Credit recipients than Scotland’s average
  • Coalfield community families will lose £40million per year with the reduction in universal credit

Nicky Wilson, Scottish Trustee for CRT said: “Unfortunately, we’re marking this year’s Challenge Poverty Week with more bad news that is likely to hit the coalfield communities the hardest. After a turbulent few years following the Covid-19 pandemic, we’ve found that people are still trying to get back on their feet with this only exacerbating issues further.

“We will continue to work closely with the former mining communities during these difficult times and urge ministers to reconsider this decision which will have devasting effects for many years to come.”

This is one of the many reports commissioned by Coalfields Regeneration Trust with their latest focused around ‘The Scottish Coalfields in 2020’ to give an updated socio-economic and deprivation assessment of Scotland’s former coalmining communities.

A copy of the full report is available to download here.

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