Scrap the cuts that will leave 3.2m worse off Pres­sure grows for ben­e­fits U-turn

Daily Record - - NEWS - BY TOR­CUIL CRICH­TON West­min­ster Ed­i­tor

THERESA May is un­der grow­ing pres­sure to re­form Uni­ver­sal Credit as a re­port said the pol­icy will leave 3.2mil­lion house­holds £50 a week worse off com­pared with tax cred­its.

The move comes af­ter Work and Pen­sions Sec­re­tary Es­ther McVey ad­mit­ted some claimants would be hit by the new sys­tem.

She is said to have told col­leagues some fam­i­lies could miss out on up to £200 a month.

The re­port, pub­lished by the Joseph Rown­tree Foun­da­tion, re­vealed that as a re­sult of Tory cuts al­most three mil­lion chil­dren across the UK are locked in poverty, de­spite liv­ing in a work­ing fam­ily. The SNP yes­ter­day called on the Govern­ment to im­me­di­ately halt the roll­out of Uni­ver­sal Credit.

The party’s so­cial jus­tice spokesman Neil Gray said the re­port was an­other damn­ing in­dict­ment of the pol­icy and the Tories’ record on poverty.

Gray said: “The botched roll­out of Uni­ver­sal Credit has left a path of dev­as­ta­tion.”

He added that it had cut “house­hold in­comes by hun­dreds or even thou­sands of pounds a year, taken sup­port away from the dis­abled and forced fam­i­lies to rely on food banks and emer­gency aid just to get by.

“Af­ter a decade of failed Tory cuts, it is vi­tal that the UK Govern­ment uses the forth­com­ing Bud­get to end aus­ter­ity, re­verse the cuts to so­cial se­cu­rity, and de­liver mean­ing­ful in­vest­ment to boost house­hold in­comes.”

Philip Ham­mond could axe plans to cut taxes for the mid­dle classes and in­stead pump money into Uni­ver­sal Credit.

The Chan­cel­lor is said to be con­sid­er­ing ditch­ing the prom­ise to raise the level at which work­ers start pay­ing in­come tax to find an ex­tra £2bil­lion for the ben­e­fits sys­tem.

Pres­sure for change on Uni­ver­sal Credit has been grow­ing, with ex-prime min­is­ters John Ma­jor and Gor­don Brown warn­ing it could be­come an­other poll tax for the Tories.

AD­MIS­SION Work and Pen­sions Sec­re­tary said some claimants would lose out. Pic: Getty

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