5,300 Borders children hit by tax credit plans, says charity

There will be 5,300 children in the Borders hit by the government’s planned tax credit cuts according to The Children’s Society figures.
Calum Kerr, SNP MP for Berwickshire, Roxburgh and SelkirkCalum Kerr, SNP MP for Berwickshire, Roxburgh and Selkirk
Calum Kerr, SNP MP for Berwickshire, Roxburgh and Selkirk

Borders MP Calum Kerr has described the cuts as a “shameful attack” on vulnerable local people already working hard to make ends meet.

Mr Kerr said: “These figures are truly shocking and show the real human cost of the current UK Government’s obsession with cutting benefits to some of the neediest people in our society.

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“It’s appalling to think that literally thousands of families in this region are going to suffer because of the Chancellor’s obsession with austerity.

“This is the true price of Conservative government policies – real human hardship right in the heart of our Borders communities.”

Last week the introduction of the tax credit cuts was delayed by a vote in the House of Lords, but the Chancellor has insisted that he will retain them regardless.

SNP MP Mr Kerr continued: “I’m grateful to The Children’s Society for providing me with these figures, shocking though they are.

My colleagues and I have done everything possible to oppose these cuts, both inside and outside the House of Commons.

“The pressure that we applied helped to lead to the government’s defeat on this last week.”

“In the wake of the Lords vote, George Osborne is now being forced to revise the proposals – but he is still hell bent on cutting the cost of tax credits by billions of pounds.

“That is going to mean bringing real misery to low paid families, both here in the Borders and right across the UK.

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“Amazingly, as if this isn’t bad enough, the UK Government plans to cover up the consequences of these cuts by re-defining what constitutes child poverty. That is also outrageous and unacceptable.

“I can give Borderers my personal assurance that SNP MPs will continue to oppose these measures.

“They are doing huge damage and putting an incredible strain on charities and local services which are ultimately having to step in and pick up the pieces.”