Coalition cuts unfair, unsustainable & irresponsible
shopworkers union Usdaw condemned the £60 billion worth of cuts
announced so far by the coalition government as unfair,
unsustainable and irresponsible and accused the coalition of forcing
working people on low incomes to "carry the can" of reducing the
Moving a motion on Child Poverty at the TUC Congress in Manchester,
Usdaw General Secretary John Hannett said:- "No-one can
disagree that there is a need to tackle the deficit, but this must
be done responsibly, sustainably and fairly. The cuts this
government has announced, cuts to the tune of £60 billion are not
responsible, sustainable or fair.
Far from reducing the deficit, their measures will make the
situation worse. They will cost jobs, push up unemployment, reduce
tax revenues, hit essential public services and do serious damage to
The cuts are on a huge scale, with welfare spending being one of the
hardest hit, £11 billion over the next 5 years. Working parents on
low incomes, disabled people and women will feel the full force of
This isn't just Usdaw's view or that of the Trade Union Movement,
it's a view shared by economic experts across the board.
Housing Benefit is being capped, benefit rates devalued, the health
in pregnancy grant is on its way out, Child Trust Funds scrapped,
Child Benefit frozen, Tax Credits rolled back, the Sure Start
Maternity Grant cut.
Some would have you believe that these are small amounts of money,
money that goes to parents that don't need it and won't miss it. But
far from it, we know from our campaigning that every one of these
benefits makes a real difference to our members' lives.
They can't choose to take or leave them, but rely on them to
maintain a decent standard of living. Restricting their reach will
have a devastating impact on millions of working families.
Labour's package of support for working parents was crucial. It
enabled parents to make real decisions about going into paid work
and made juggling paid work with family life manageable.
In short, Labour made sure work paid.
We will hold this Government to account for failing to tackle child
poverty, for failing to consider the impact their measures will have
on women, children and disabled people and for forcing working
people on lower incomes to carry the can."
Do you agree with Usdaw or
do you think the Unions are now being silly and risking recovery?
Email us your views on this...
Benefit Buffering is the way to get more of Britain’s 4 million
unemployed households working....
20% of all the
households in Britain do not include anyone who has a job according
to the Office of National Statistics (ONS). 4 million
households now have no adults in work, ONS figures show this is a 10
year high and the number is still rising. In the vast majority of
such households no one is even searching for employment.
The Government’s principle long-term unemployment subcontractor,
A4e, have long campaigned for an overhaul of benefits that would
include a system of benefit ‘buffering’. This would allow claimants
to ease themselves into work by keeping a portion of their benefit
after they started earning.
“A4e have campaigned for a system of benefit buffering for
many years. We have created a
‘benefit culture’ in this country by making it financially so
difficult for people to start work.” said Mrs Harrison.
Government ministers have been shocked by the National Office of
Statistics figures and the Employment Minister Chris Grayling said:-
“Some areas of Britain are suffering from intergenerational
worklessness, which is why we must act now to ensure that children
living in workless households are not left behind like their parents
This is why we are pushing ahead with our Work Programme, which will
give people who are out of work and need a job the right support at
the right time so that they can get into employment.”
The figures illustrated that the highest number of workless families
were situated in the North East (24.3% of the total population for
the area) while the lowest was in the South East (14.2%).
“It’s can be very frightening to take a job if you’re been
living on benefits for a long time. You will have no buffer against
the job not working out and if you have children it could be just
untenable. This Government
will be tougher on benefit claimants and it’s the right thing to do,
because work is good for people.” said Mrs Harrison.
A4e operates in 11 countries across 4 continents, employs over 3,300
people and turns over close to £200m a year. More than 1 million
long-term unemployed have been found work in the UK.