Calendar An icon of a desk calendar. Cancel An icon of a circle with a diagonal line across. Caret An icon of a block arrow pointing to the right. Email An icon of a paper envelope. Facebook An icon of the Facebook "f" mark. Google An icon of the Google "G" mark. Linked In An icon of the Linked In "in" mark. Logout An icon representing logout. Profile An icon that resembles human head and shoulders. Telephone An icon of a traditional telephone receiver. Tick An icon of a tick mark. Is Public An icon of a human eye and eyelashes. Is Not Public An icon of a human eye and eyelashes with a diagonal line through it. Pause Icon A two-lined pause icon for stopping interactions. Quote Mark A opening quote mark. Quote Mark A closing quote mark. Arrow An icon of an arrow. Folder An icon of a paper folder. Breaking An icon of an exclamation mark on a circular background. Camera An icon of a digital camera. Caret An icon of a caret arrow. Clock An icon of a clock face. Close An icon of the an X shape. Close Icon An icon used to represent where to interact to collapse or dismiss a component Comment An icon of a speech bubble. Comments An icon of a speech bubble, denoting user comments. Ellipsis An icon of 3 horizontal dots. Envelope An icon of a paper envelope. Facebook An icon of a facebook f logo. Camera An icon of a digital camera. Home An icon of a house. Instagram An icon of the Instagram logo. LinkedIn An icon of the LinkedIn logo. Magnifying Glass An icon of a magnifying glass. Search Icon A magnifying glass icon that is used to represent the function of searching. Menu An icon of 3 horizontal lines. Hamburger Menu Icon An icon used to represent a collapsed menu. Next An icon of an arrow pointing to the right. Notice An explanation mark centred inside a circle. Previous An icon of an arrow pointing to the left. Rating An icon of a star. Tag An icon of a tag. Twitter An icon of the Twitter logo. Video Camera An icon of a video camera shape. Speech Bubble Icon A icon displaying a speech bubble WhatsApp An icon of the WhatsApp logo. Information An icon of an information logo. Plus A mathematical 'plus' symbol. Duration An icon indicating Time. Success Tick An icon of a green tick. Success Tick Timeout An icon of a greyed out success tick. Loading Spinner An icon of a loading spinner.

Scottish Greens say more than 11,200 children will be affected by new benefit cap

Alison Johnstone MSP Lothian / Scottish Green Party (Andrew Cowan/Scottish Parliament)
Alison Johnstone MSP Lothian / Scottish Green Party (Andrew Cowan/Scottish Parliament)

 

MORE than 11,000 children in Scotland are being hit by the UK Government’s new lower benefit cap, according to research by the Scottish Greens.

Analysis by the party suggests that since the cap was lowered to £20,000 a year in November, there has been a 434% rise in the number of affected households in Scotland.

Some areas have been harder hit than others, with a 918% rise in capped households in North Ayrshire, the report suggests.

With around 90% of households having at least one child, the research estimates the change is having an impact on around 11,200 children whose families are losing on average £2,000 to £3,000.

Green MSP Alison Johnstone has called for the benefit cap to be scrapped, or alternatively for the Scottish Government to mitigate the change in a similar way to the so-called bedroom tax.

Ms Johnstone said: “Seven years into the Tories’ cruel agenda of cuts, we now see the terrible impact on children in our communities.

“By reducing the social security support available, while ignoring rising housing costs, the UK Government has pushed an additional 11,000 children into potential poverty and homelessness.

“Our analysis shows that to mitigate this unfair UK policy, the Scottish Government could take the same approach as it rightly did with the hated bedroom tax, and use its powers over discretionary housing payments to end the misery caused by the benefit cap.

“This would cost in the region of two million pounds a year but it would make a huge difference to the lives of vulnerable families across Scotland.”

A Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) spokeswoman said: “Work is the bestway to raise living standards, and many parents with young children areemployed.

“As our latest figures show, 34,000 households previously capped have moved into work, 970 in Scotland. The benefit cap restores balance, making the system fairer to the taxpayer, and provides a financial incentive to move into work for those who can.

“Lone parents can still receive benefits up to the equivalent salary of £25,000. Discretionary Housing Payments are available to people who need extra help and in addition, Scotland also has significant welfare powers.”

Nicola Sturgeon announces £45 million business boost