West Tyrone Sinn Féin -- Building an Ireland of Equals

Benefit cap will force more families into poverty trap

Published: 9 January, 2013

Strabane Sinn Fein Councillor Brian Mc Mahon has said that the decision by the British Tory government to cap all benefit increases to 1% will only force more families into the poverty trap and will have a disproportionately negative impact in areas of high multi-deprivation like Strabane District.

He said,

"This decision to cap benefits rises to 1% is but the latest measure to be inflicted upon the poorest and most vulnerable sections of the by this Tory led government. In real terms, it represents a decrease as inflation is growing at an average of 2.8% and this will plunge more people into the poverty trap over the next few years.

"Benefits have always been linked to inflation and this break will undoubtedly signal the end of providing a benefit system as a method of keeping people out of poverty.

"Not only will 'Cap' have an impact on people solely on benefits but also the working poor like the many in this District who rely on tax credits to supplement their low wages and this cap will undoubtedly force many more and more families into the poverty trap.

"The proposed Tory Welfare reform act has nothing to do about tackling poverty but is about more about attacking the poor.

"The Tory cuts disguised as reform will put many more people into the poverty trap and needs to be opposed. Sinn Féin is the only party that has brought alternative measures to the table to offset some of the most draconian measures and will continue to work to protect the most vulnerable people in our society."