Monday, October 14, 2019

Welfare debate highlights the very worst of Tory ‘callousness’ towards Britain’s poorest

Tories "have their heads firmly in the sand" over the devastating impact of their welfare policies, says SNP MP.

SNP Health spokesperson at Westminster Dr Philippa Whitford MP has said it is clear that the Tories ‘have their heads firmly in the sand’ when it come to the effects their welfare policies are having on families and disabled people across the UK.

Dr. Whitford’s comments come following a debate she secured at Westminster on the effect of Welfare Reform and Work Act 2016 – which was passed two years ago to the week.

The Tories’ benefit freeze and benefit cuts have hit the poorest and most vulnerable in society and yet there is no end in sight to Tory austerity.

Dr Philippa Whitford MP commented: “What the debate today has shown once again is that the Tories have their heads firmly in the sand over their deeply harmful welfare policies.

“The Welfare Reform and Work Act has implemented punitive cuts to social security in the guise of welfare ‘reform’ with a long list of social security cuts – the Benefit Cap, the Benefit Freeze, the two child limit on Child Tax Credits, and the cut to Employment Support Allowance, among others.

“Many MPs are also now dealing with the roll out of Universal Credit in their constituencies – including my own. This is turning into a shambles – harming so many.

“Tory cuts are driving more children into poverty. Relative Child Poverty is projected to rise by 7% come 2022, which will mean another 200,000 children facing poverty during their formative years, and the number of children classed as poor is at its highest level since the start of the decade.

“In Scotland, the Scottish Government is taking action, already spending over £450 million in 2017/18 to mitigate Westminster cuts, but the UK Government can’t be allowed to get away with this and must be held to account to change their damaging policies at source: Westminster. The Tories think they can do anything to Scotland – and get away with it.

“They keep claiming that their ‘pretend’ Living Wage and rise in the Tax Allowance are protecting the poorest but the Office of Budget Responsibility has demonstrated that the cuts are three times the size of the rise in pay and only one pound in six from the rise in Tax Allowance, benefits those in the lower half of incomes.

“This Act exemplifies the very worst of this Tory Government’s callousness.

“When it went through Parliament, the Tories ignored SNP warnings that it would cause deep harm. Now that the evidence is clear – they continue to remain in denial over the damage they are causing – with their ideological obsession with austerity.’’

Disclaimer: This is an official press release from the Scottish National Party. Headline, images, and description chosen by Welfare Weekly.

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