Local MP speaks out against coalition cuts

Eilidh Whiteford MP

Local MP Dr Eilidh Whiteford, SNP spokesperson for Work and Pensions has hit out at the coalition’s changes to benefits and direct taxes.

The rreport prepared by a group of academics and overseen by the LSE and the Universities of Manchester and York shows that the coalition’s changes to benefits and direct taxes have hurt families with children under five harder than any other household group.

The report shows that

Although the Coalition stressed the importance of the “foundation years”, in fact families with children under five saw significant cuts to services – real spending per child on early education, childcare and Sure Start services fell by a quarter between 2009-10 and 2012-13. In addition, tax-benefit reforms hit families with children under five harder than any other household type.

The report concludes that the government’s stated aim that the rich should contribute proportionately more to repairing the country’s finances has “not been realised”.

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Commenting on the report Dr Whiteford said

This report lays bare the extent of the UK government’s disastrous austerity agenda.

The Scottish Government is doing all it can to mitigate the impact of welfare cuts, but the real powers over tax and welfare still remain in Westminster – despite the fact that the UK government has proven time and time again it cannot be trusted to look out for our most vulnerable people.

While the SNP voted against continued austerity from Westminster, Scottish Labour sided with the coalition and voted for £30bn more austerity which, as this report shows, hits the poorest the hardest.

A strong team of SNP MPs will ensure that Scotland’s priorities will become Westminster’s priorities, and force an end to failed austerity.


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