Benefit scourge

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Ewan Crawford (Perspective, 22 January) makes a strong case for independence to protect the poor against Tory welfare cuts.

The stories already coming out are truly horrendous as the full impact of the cuts begin to bite. For example, are people aware of the bedroom tax, whereby even if you have lived in a council house all your life, and probably paid for it twice over, you will be charged extra rent if you are deemed to have a spare bedroom?

The effect of this measure is shown in recent research where families are faced with moving out of their homes or missing meals to pay the extra rent.

Add to this the limits being imposed on housing benefit which, in the words of Boris Johnson, “will ethnically cleanse London”, forcing families out into cheaper areas where there are no jobs. Has no-one told the government that housing benefit goes to the landlords, not the tenants?

Fortunately, the people of Scotland are protected against the worse of these measures by the SNP government.

However, as Mr Crawford points out, we cannot protect the poor against cuts in social 
security or workers against 
removal of their rights at work because they are decided in London by the one Tory MP elected in Scotland.

These draconian attacks on welfare don’t just affect the poor – they determine what kind of society we all live in. Only an independent Scotland can choose to be different from the return to the 19th century being inflicted by our Westminster rulers.

Hugh Kerr