Universal Credit and Mental Health Research Project | CPAG

Universal Credit and Mental Health Research Project

We are interested in exploring how the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) treats people with mental health issues who claim universal credit. In particular, how the DWP meets its Equality Act duties and its own policy to anticipate and respond to disabled claimants’ needs for a reasonable adjustment during the claim process and in respect to their ongoing award.

This project is funded by Fusion21 Foundation.



We will use the research findings to call for improvements to be made to the universal credit system. We will do this by sharing our findings with politicians, welfare rights advisers, lawyers, claimants and, of course, the DWP.

We are looking for universal credit claimants with mental health issues to take part in the research project. Claimants need not have a formal mental health diagnosis.

For claimants:
We would like to hear from you if you are interested in taking part in the research. Contact Emily at [email protected]   Taking part would mean talking on the phone about yourself, your circumstances and your experiences of universal credit. The phone call would probably take between half an hour and an hour. If you have access to a webcam, this could also take place on Zoom / similar if you prefer. We can arrange a convenient time for us to talk.

We may ask participants if you would agree for us to ask the DWP for your claim records. This is to see whether it has been recorded that you have been asked whether you require any preferred ways of communicating, through making a reasonable adjustment.  This is optional, and you may choose to take part without agreeing to requesting your records.

We are able to offer a £25 voucher for Amazon or Sainsbury’s as a way of saying thank you for taking part.

Here is a link to the FileParticipant Information Sheet and Consent Form.

Emily Williams photo


Emily Williams, Welfare Rights Adviser