CASH-STRAPPED families are missing out on much-needed support through Universal Credit, it is feared.

Latest figures show there are now more than 9,000 people in Renfrewshire and East Renfrewshire receiving Universal Credit.

However, there are concerns that many others are still not aware of additional entitlements they may be eligible for, such as help with childcare and half-price travel on rail and bus services.

Will Quince, Minister for Welfare Delivery, is urging people to visit the Universal Credit website to make sure they aren’t missing out.

He said: “Universal Credit is helping to support thousands of people across Scotland as they look for work. However, many people are still not aware of additional entitlements they may be eligible for.

“Find out what Universal Credit could offer you at”.

Universal Credit was introduced last year, replacing six previous benefits with a single monthly payment.

It can be claimed whether you are in or out of work and is designed to mean no-one faces a situation where they would be better off claiming benefits than working.

However, the rollout has proved controversial, with critics raising concerns over how long new claimants have to wait before receiving their cash.

A total of 7,282 people in Renfrewshire now claim Universal Credit, with 1,822 claimants in East Renfrewshire.

Derek Kilday, group director for Central and West Scotland at the Department for Work and Pensions, said Universal Credit is helping more people move into work faster and become financially independent.

“It is providing valuable support for families and is helping to transform lives for the better,” he added.

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