NCT response to proposed benefits cap

Released on: 08 January 2013

The House of Commons will vote today on the Welfare Benefits Uprating Bill, which would keep the benefit rises to 1% for three years from next April.

Elizabeth Duff, Senior Policy Adviser for parent charity NCT said:

“NCT calls for families to be protected from further financial hardship that impacts on the wellbeing of pregnant women, new parents and their babies and young children.

“The Chancellor George Osborne proposes to cap increases in benefits at 1% for three years from April this year. This would apply to maternity allowance, maternity pay and paternity pay as well as the couple and lone parent elements of the working tax credit and the child element of the child tax credit, benefits that have previously risen in line with consumer prices.

“The rate of inflation has risen to 2.7%, and there are warnings of above-average increases to both food prices and energy bills in the months ahead. Young families need the basics of warm, dry housing, nutritious food, suitable clothing and access to affordable laundry facilities. Lack of these fundamental needs leads to sickness and stress for parents at a time their income is already stretched. We urge policy-makers to stop adding to the pressures on parents that force them to forgo essentials and drive them into debt.”