Single mum tells how she copes with bipolar disorder – and how she lives in fear of Universal Credit – Huddersfield Examiner

A woman who works as a volunteer in an advice centre says people are suffering mental health breakdowns due to changes in their benefits.

Single mum Sheryl Odlum says the introduction of the controversial Universal Credit monthly benefit has led to people waiting six weeks for money which is leading to eviction for non-payment of rent.

She says people are being forced to use food banks.

Sheryl, 52, whose two children are now grown up, has previously worked full-time before she was hit by severe depression.

She has lived on benefits for several years and recently moved from Leeds to Moldgreen.

Now, as Universal Credit is rolled out across Huddersfield, she is facing an uncertain future which is affecting her mental health.

At the moment Sheryl receives Employment and Support Allowance which is given to those who cannot work because of illness or disability.

She also receives Housing Benefit, Council Tax Support and Disability Living Allowance.

She will lose these individual benefits if she is made to apply for the catch-all Universal Credit.

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