Tuesday, 8 November 2011
Benefits cuts to hit Wales harder
A new study by Sheffield Hallam University has shown that the UK government's incapacity benefit reforms will hit Wales harder than any other part of the UK. It has been estimated that up to75,000 people will no longer be eligible for incapacity benefit by 2014.
This is proof, if any further was needed, that we are not all in this together as David Cameron would have us believe. The Con/Dem coalition has no compassion for the very people for whom the welfare state was set up – how else would they be able to push through these punitive policies that will hit the former coalfield communities in Wales harder than any other part of the UK?
This will mean that more people in Wales will have to choose between heating and eating. More children will be pushed into poverty. More local businesses will go to the wall because the disposable income of their customers has been taken away by the UK government.
David Cameron and his cabinet of millionaires are deliberately and ideologically shrinking the public sector by launching a full-scale attack on our hard-won welfare system. It is a futile exercise to tell people to go and find a job when none exist. Too many people in Wales live in communities where the market has failed to provide jobs and that are yet to recover from the Thatcher policies of the 1980s. Some of those policies involved encouraging people to claim particular benefits to avoid the appearance of inflated unemployment figures. How will benefit reductions on this scale, with no jobs, help to turn these communities around?
These cuts have been designed to hit the worst off while the multi-millionaire tax evaders and avoiders get off scot-free. Will the Welsh government do or say anything about it?