THOUSANDS OF LOCAL FAMILIES HIT BY BENEFITS CUT
Thousands of families in Dundee have been hit by a cut to Universal Credit.
Local MP Stewart Hosie has hit out at the Tories over their scrapping of the £20 uplift.
The Dundee East representative visited Citizens Advice Scotland (CAS) in Dundee last week to mark Challenge Poverty Week and speak to staff about the impact of the changes to the benefit and rise in living costs.
The UK Government repeatedly rejected calls from the SNP and CAS to make the uplift permanent, despite overwhelming evidence that cuts, even by as low as £10 a week, would devastate millions of families.
Research published by Citizens Advice Scotland in September showed that two-thirds of claimants, even with the uplift to Universal Credit, felt that the UC payment they received was inadequate to meet their needs.
According to the research 74% of claimants will now struggle to make ends meet, with over a quarter unable to pay for essentials.
Previous analysis from the House of Commons Library, using DWP data, showed that the changes would affect almost half a million Scots (477,996). Locally the changes are expected to hit 8,114 people in Dundee East, just under 15% of the adult population aged 16-65.
Following the visit to Citizens Advice Scotland the Dundee East MP said:
“While Boris Johnson was preaching empty platitudes to Tory Conference, I was speaking with Citizens Advice staff about the realities of the Prime Minister’s callous cuts agenda.”
“In recent months my office has been inundated with pleas for help from constituents affected by this cut as well has hundreds of emails calling for the Tories to keep the uplift permanent.”
“The overall cost of living is soaring under this UK Government, a more appropriate change to Universal Credit would have been to increase the uplift and make it permanent - not strip away the only lifeline thousands of local families have left.”
“I’ll continue to press the UK Government to reverse these cuts and to protect the most vulnerable but ultimately the only way to keep Scotland safe from damaging Tory rule is to assume full powers over social security by becoming an independent country.”