Victims of rape could soon be forced to justify a claim for tax credits with the HMRC, under welfare changes announced by Chancellor George Osborne.
George Osborne has announced today that Tax credits and Universal Credit will be limited to no more than two children. The controversial policy was unveiled in the summer budget and affects children born after April 2017.
The budget includes “protections” for women who “have a third child as a result of rape”, but rape victims will have to justify their claim to the HMRC before receiving tax credits for the child, reports Herald Scotland.
SNP MP Roger Mullin urged the Chancellor not to force rape victims to justify themselves to the tax man. Adding that victims of rape should be given “decent treatment” within the benefits system.
Tory MP Jacob Rees-Mogg said the budget was highly moral, a comment which “stunned” and infuriated Mr Mullin.
Mr Mullin replied: “It reminded me that today is the 131st anniversary to the day of the formation of the National Society for Prevention of Cruelty to Children – on the very day that this Government brings in a Budget that attacks children, tax credits for children.”
He added: “What on earth is moral about dragging women to have to talk about the fact that they may have been raped to get some decent treatment out of benefits in this society? What can possibly be moral about that?
“I would appeal to the Government to, for goodness sake, you may seek savings in many other parts of welfare but don’t punish children and don’t force women who have gone through the trauma of rape to have to justify themselves to the taxman.”