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CAS tells Chancellor: your welfare cuts are a 'lose-lose' policy, bad for the poor and bad for the economy

19 Mar 2013

Citizens Advice Scotland’s Chief Executive has written to the Chancellor, George Osborne, urging him to halt the welfare reforms that are hurting vulnerable people and damaging the Scottish economy.

Margaret Lynch’s letter, sent in advance of the budget, cites independent economic evidence to say that the government’s welfare reforms are not only hurting poor and vulnerable people but are taking £2.7bn out of the Scottish economy.

Margaret Lynch says,

“I’ve sent this letter because I felt it was necessary to make the Chancellor aware of the devastating impact his welfare cuts are having, not just on the poor and vulnerable people who are most directly hit, but also on the wider Scottish economy as a whole.

“For the last few years the Scottish CAB service has seen first-hand the impact that these welfare reforms are having on individuals and their families. The cuts have hit those who are most in need, including some of the most sick and disabled people in our communities, young people, pensioners, unemployed people, families with young children, and carers. Every CAB in Scotland sees these people every day, and we see the terrible impact these policies are having on them.

“But what we also know is that these cuts actually damage the whole of the Scottish economy too. If people have less money in their pockets, then they spend less in the shops. And that means fewer jobs, more debt, and a stagnant economy. Independent economists say the welfare reforms are taking a total of £2.7bn out of the Scottish economy – with disabled people and their families bearing the brunt of that.

“So in this letter my message to the Chancellor is that his government’s welfare reforms represent a ‘lose-lose’ policy for Scotland. They are hurting the most vulnerable people, and forcing many of them into poverty. But if that wasn’t bad enough, they are also damaging our economy as a whole.”  

For further information, or to arrange interviews, please contact Tony Hutson on 07774 751655.

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