Help the End Hunger UK Coalition send a powerful message to PM to fix Universal Credit

The End Hunger UK coalition have launched a petition today calling on the Prime Minister to fix universal credit.

Food Poverty





Follow UKSustain



In areas where Universal Credit has been rolled out, foodbanks and other food aid providers report a surge in the numbers of people pushed into greater debt, destitution and hunger as a result of delays, errors, a lack of flexibility and adequate support. 

Therefore as a matter of urgency, the End Hunger UK coalition has launched a petition calling on the government to:

  • Take action to improve the flexibility and support for people on Universal Credit.
  • Make improvements to Universal Credit, to ensure it does not leave more people at risk of debt and destitution.
  • Make a long-term commitment to ensure Universal Credit provides people with enough income to afford good food on a regular basis.

Click here to take action and sign the petition


The key policy recommendations that are laid out in the report that accompanies the petition are as follows.

In the short term: better training for staff and increased flexibility for claimants.

  • Welfare rights and debt advice as part of Universal Support
  • Flexibility in Universal Credit applications to allow for telephone applications 
  • Increased awareness and implementation of Alternative Pay Arrangements (APAs)
  • Improved claimant commitments to ensure conditionality is genuinely tailored to circumstances

In the medium term: improving the design of Universal Credit, to ensure it does not leave more people at risk of debt and destitution

  • Reduce the wait time for first payments of Universal Credit from five weeks to two
  • Reduce the level of advance loan repayments from 40% to 10% per month 
  • Introduce a true yellow card warning system before issuing sanctions that involve the actual suspension of Universal Credit payments

In the long term: a commitment to ensure Universal Credit provides people with enough income to afford good food on a regular basis 

  • Universal Credit levels brought in line with the actual cost of living
  • Payments for people with disabilities restored to pre-April 2017 levels 

The End Hunger UK is a coalition that has a vision for the UK to be a nation where everyone has access to good food, and nobody has to go to bed hungry. It is supported by many national organisations, including: Baptists Together; Child Poverty Action Group; Church Action on Poverty; he Church of England; the Church of Scotland; Fareshare; First Steps Nutrition Trust; Food Bank As It Is; Food Ethics Council; Fabian Commission on Food and Poverty; The Food Foundation; the Independent Food Aid Network; Food Matters; Magic Breakfast; the Methodist Church; Nourish Scotland; Oxfam; Quaker Peace and Social Witness; Sustain: the alliance for better food and farming; The Trussell Trust; and the United Reformed Church.


Join the Food Poverty Project email list

News about our work on food poverty, including campaigning and good practice from around the UK.

Food Poverty: Over 8 million people in the UK struggle to get enough to eat. Sustain is working with communities, third-sector organisations, local authorities and government, aiming to make sure everyone can eat well.


Other Food Poverty news

Show all news

Food Poverty publications

Show all publications



Sustain: the alliance for better food and farming

Sustain advocates food and agriculture policies and practices that enhance the health and welfare of people and animals, improve the working and living environment, promote equity and enrich society and culture.