Paul Blomfield, MP for Sheffield Central, today challenged a Government Minister to meet a Sheffield working mother hit by cuts to tax credits, saying, “the Government talks endlessly about supporting people in work, but their biggest change to the welfare budget is hitting working people.”
Government changes to tax credits, benefits and the minimum wage will make the average household with children £1,127 a year worse off, according to the House of Commons Library. The changes will affect 27,100 families in Sheffield.
After voting against the cuts on Tuesday, Mr Blomfield challenged Government Minister Damian Hinds, to meet one of his constituents to see the real impact of the policy. He said: “The Government talk in big numbers. They need to hear human stories. My constituent was desperate for her voice to be heard. She works hard, but on low pay. So she relies on tax credits to make ends meet.”
In his letter Mr Blomfield, told the Government Minister about the single mother with two young children who works 31 hours a week, 42 weeks a year, who will lose £1,878 each year, a weekly cut of £36 of her income, and urged the Minister to meet her to understand the devastating impact of the cuts.
The mother, who would prefer to remain anonymous, said: “I have always worked and never signed on in my life, although the harsh reality is that I would probably be better off not working. Self-respect and trying to be a good example for my children doesn’t count for anything.”
Mr Blomfield said to the Minister: “I do hope that you will agree to meet with her, to hear directly about the impact of the tax credit changes from just one person whose life will be deeply affected.”
Notes for Editors
- Tax credit cuts will impact over 3 million families, with an average loss of over £1,000, according to the IFS.
- The changes will affect 27,100 families in Sheffield. In Sheffield Central 4,200 families (including 3,100 families with children) will be affected.
- When responding to questions regarding the cuts to tax credits and their impact on low income families, Ministers have pointed to the introduction of a higher minimum wage (the ‘National Living Wage’) to suggest that families will benefit from the Budget changes, and that work incentives will be strengthened. However, the latest report from the IFS indicates that tax and benefit changes (namely tax credits cuts) will far outweigh any benefit from the new NLW.
For further information please call Paul Blomfield MP’s office on 0114 272 2882.