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Eilidh Whiteford, MP for Banff & Buchan

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WARNINGS OVER IMPACT OF COALITION WELFARE CUTS ON ECONOMY

Wednesday, 15 September 2010

SNP Work and Pensions spokesperson, Eilidh Whiteford MP, has seized on a report produced by the Scottish Local Government Forum Against Poverty (SLGFAP) and Rights Advice Scotland (RAS) which reveals the economic impact of the UK Government’s rushed welfare reforms.

The report, “People, Councils, the Economy”, published today (Wednesday) reveals that Con Dem Coalition’s decision to change Disability Living Allowance, Incapacity Benefit, Housing Benefit, freeze Child Benefit and increase other benefits, allowances and public sector pensions by the Consumer Price Index instead of the Retail Price Index would take between £514million and £614million from the Scottish economy every year - directly jeopardising 14,000 jobs.

Commenting, Dr Whiteford said:

“This report demonstrates the wider impact on the economy of the Con/Dem coalitions rushed benefit reforms which look increasingly look like an attack on the poorest and most vulnerable in society.

“While reform is necessary, it must be done carefully and decisions on entitlements based on medical need.

“We simply must not have cuts for the sake of cuts. Not only would that risk forcing the truly vulnerable in society into a perilous position, it also takes vital capital out of the economy without consideration of the impact.”

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