THE Arfon MP Hywel Williams has welcomed a Government U-turn confirming that Welsh language speakers will be able to apply for Universal Credit.

There had been concerns that there would be delays in the Department for Works and Pensions' provision for Welsh speaking claimants of the new benefit.

Although welcoming the move, Mr Williams still believes that the new benefit is "flawed," and is calling for a postponement of the benefit roll-out in Gwynedd.

In a letter to the Plaid Cymru Member of Parliament and party spokesperson on work and pensions, the DWP said the new online service would offer the "same functionality for Welsh-speaking customers as it does for those using the English service.

"Welsh speaking claimants will be assigned a Welsh speaking case manager and work coach."

All face to face meetings will also be in Welsh.

Mr Williams said: "I’m pleased the DWP has finally acted.

"I have long-campaigned to bring about this change so that my Welsh speaking constituents entitled to claim welfare support, are able to do so in the language of their choice, using the same method as everyone who does in English.

"I tabled several Written Questions and raised the matter in the House of Commons, seeking clarity from the Government as to why Welsh speakers were being denied their full rights to take advantage of the online service.’

"Whilst I congratulate DWP technical staff on working to implement this new system, it is regretful that the online system wasn’t developed as a fully accessible, bilingual service from the outset. There is a lesson to be learnt here."

Mr Williams added: "I remain concerned however that the Universal Credit system as it is now remains flawed."

"The Government still haven’t sufficiently addressed some of the failures in the system, such as the discriminatory two child policy, and I therefore renew my call to postpone the roll-out in Gwynedd until these are properly redressed."