£20 Reduction has led to 'more families at foodbanks' and 'more shame, guilt and embarrassment'
The UK Government’s decision to cut Universal Credit by £20 has been described as ‘very brutal and very unfair’ by a leading children’s charity in Scotland.
Mary Glasgow, Chief Executive of Children 1st, told a meeting of the Scottish Parliament’s Health, Social Care and Sport Committee that the decision to cut the support sent a clear message to families that ‘their poverty did not matter’. She also told the Health and Sport committee that more families are turning to foodbanks, parents are choosing to starve themselves so their children can eat and cannot afford to buy clothes for their kids.
Ms Glasgow also told how the cut has caused ‘more guilt, shame and embarrassment’ for families who have suffered as a result of the cut.
Commenting, Richard Thomson MP said:
“I have previously questioned UK Government Ministers in the House of Commons and cited the concerns of a range of highly-respected organisations such as the Joseph Rowntree Foundation, Citizens Advice Scotland and the Child Poverty Action Group who came out against the cut to Universal Credit and backed this up with extremely detailed research on how devastating the effect of this will be on families.
“Now Children 1st – Scotland’s national children’s charity - has laid bare the harsh reality of these Conservative cuts, where families have had to make tough choices on whether to heat their homes or feed their children. This is abhorrent and unacceptable.
“Families across Scotland are facing a perfect storm of soaring energy and food costs and the UK Conservative Government has failed to support these families through this most difficult of winters.
“This once again demonstrates the tale of two governments facing the people of Scotland, the one at Westminster cuts vital support from families whereas the SNP Scottish Government is doubling the Scottish Child Payment to lift thousands of children out of poverty.
“However, the Scottish Government continues to provide support with one hand tied behind its back. Only with full powers over our own affairs will we have a Scottish Government able to provide the full range of support to families who need it most.”