West Ham MP Lyn Brown on the effects of cutting child tax credit


- Credit: Archant

This Parliament started with a bang. We’ve had the European Union Referendum Bill, The Scotland Bill, Education and Adoption Bill, and next Wednesday, we get an ‘emergency budget.’

The Tory government is very keen to drown us in a fresh wave of austerity measures and cut support for those earning least. If the rumours are true, this ‘emergency budget’ will filtch £5billion of Child Tax Credit from people on £15,000 per year, whilst cutting taxes yet again for people paid over £150,000.

Nearly four million working families are expected to lose £1,400 every year. Parents and their children will be the victims: working parents doing their best to make ends meet, those on zero hours contracts and those who have seen their hours cut and their household costs rise.

It’s an absolute disgrace, destroying living standards for millions whilst cutting taxes for millionaires. Exactly what we expect from Tories - they have form.

David Cameron stated the government will be judged on how they tackle poverty. The Tory manifesto proclaimed they will “work to eliminate child poverty and introduce better measures to drive real change.” Under Cameron’s watch, 500,000 more children have dropped into poverty, that’s 4.1 million children without enough food, decent housing and clothing.

So, how does this government intend to meet its manifesto commitment? It’s changing the way child poverty is measured and, Hey Presto!, down the numbers will go. They will pretend the problem has ‘vanished. To me, a hungry child is a hungry child, whatever labels we use.

Labour is in the midst of electing a new leader. I support Yvette Cooper, because I think she best understands the challenges ordinary people face. For Yvette, a mum of three, eradicating child poverty is at the heart of her leadership bid.

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Britain needed a government that addressed the cost-of-living crisis, low-wages, exploitative zero hours contracts and brought some fairness back into our lives.

Sadly, all we got are Cameron’s uncaring Tories, the antithesis of what we needed. More from Lyn

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