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Benefits cuts in the media

Perhaps not surprisingly, most of the media have paid little attention to the plan in this week’s budget to impose £12 billion of unspecified cuts on the benefits bill. The fact that it could be a matter of life or death to claimants is not something that most of the press are troubled by.

Below is a round-up of some of the more useful coverage, however. Please post a link in the guardian graphic showing how large the cuts would need to becomments section to anything else you have found that might help inform Benefits and Work readers.

The New Statesman is reporting that the planned freeze of working age benefits for two years would save just £3 billion of the £12 billion in cuts. Even if the freeze were to extend to the whole five years of the next parliament it would create only £6.9 billion in cuts.

They also point out that limiting child benefit to three children per family will save only £300 million.

As well as covering the Institute for Fiscal Studies demand for more details on benefits cuts, the Guardian points out that attempts to cut the benefits bill in the last five years have not always been successful. They argue that “A cut in tax credit entitlements has done little more than put a brake on their inexorable rise” and that housing benefit “is likely to rise in line with escalating rents”.

In addition, “pensioners are in line for an inflation-busting rise of 2.5% in the state pension next month” and, with inflation likely to stay low, they are likely to get “another above-inflation rise next year”.

While the cost of jobseeker’s allowance may fall if employment continues to rise “it accounts for only a tiny fraction of welfare spending” allowance.

There's also an excellent Guardian graphic which shows what a huge hole Osborne's cuts will blow in working age benefits.

Meanwhile the Independent finds that voters are unlikely to be told what cuts to benefits the tories are planning as “David Gauke, a Treasury minister, told the BBC the Tories would set out the details after the election”.

Comments  

+3 #7 Paul Richards 2015-03-23 22:09
Hi all,
@2200: On Ch 504 Parliament: I have just had the 'edification' of seeing the Chief Secretary to the Treasury, Danny Alexander (also with IDS and William Hague to the left of him!) fully justify 'His' idea of what the Coalition has done for this Country. He was formerly challenged by Labour front and back benchers on his (and the Tories) record on everything - but he denied everything, saying that 'more people were in work than ever before'!
Danny Alexander obviously thinks of 'himself' now as a Tory and in my own, humble opinion, he should himself just revert and become a 'Conservative' - His true 'Liberal Democrats' should be totally ashamed of him - he is nothing other than a Tory in LibDem shoes.
Even more now - should you all support Labour, or in ANY way whatsoever to kick this horrible Coalition dictatorship out of POWER.
+2 #6 Paul Richards 2015-03-23 20:10
Hi all,
And now ..... there is only 44 more signatures to go to reach the final total of 6000 to get IDS dragged up to face the Parliamentary Standards Committee to answer for his despicable and sickening behaviour (and the mountains of lies) towards the most vulnerable, the most sick and the disabled of Britain. His 'orders' to 'his' DWP has resulted in very many deaths due to their imposed sanctions. If you or me were to do any of the things that he has done - we would definitely be jailed.
+4 #5 Paul Richards 2015-03-22 22:31
Hi Jim, Bill, tintack and Elaine,
Yes, all of you are right in what you say. With the Election not too far away now, we can definitely expect to see a whole lot of new dirty tricks as they all jostle for their totally unjustified POWER!
Today's revelations regarding the Tory MP allegedly trying to twist things to his, and his own party's favour is I think now just a pre-taster of what may well be to come.
I also agree that the press media as such should be legally bound not to be biased and should report all party's news impartially and above all - truthfully - we in Britain deserve much, much better than what we have at present. Although our present political system is in total chaos and crisis, it is never right, that the press can influence opinion so much that the truth is never mooted and that the election can be won by what THEY print! Incidentally, my direct e-mails to both Sky News and BBC News two weeks ago now has resulted in absolutely nothing from either of them. I suspect my other friends on here who have also e-mailed them (and the press) probably have heard nothing also. This is disgraceful - we pay our TV licence fees and regarding this, we also deserve better.
I also agree with you Jim that any outcome is likely to turn into a coalition - again probably secretly sorted out behind closed doors in Westminster. Who needs to hear about 'other Countries corruption' - many of our politicians seem to be past masters at it!
Meanwhile, to try to get IDS to answer for his abject cruelty, there is now only 52 signatures required on the online petition. This can be found at:
https://you.38degrees.org.uk/petitions/investigate-ids-for-lies
+3 #4 Jim Allison 2015-03-21 20:13
It's so disgusting that I dare not post what I'd like to say as it wouldn't be allowed. But 'firing squad' springs to mine, and extermination of the sick and disabled by starvation etc....in other words akin to the holocaust.

Also, millionaire Cameron had the audacity to claim DLA for his late son, what hypocrisy to allow smarmy Osborne and the hated IDS to inflict suffering on people who have chronic illness/disabil ity through no fault of their own.

Would Labour, LibDems, UKIP or any other party change anything I doubt it.

As a former Welfare Rights Officer, the benefits system needed some reform with over 35 different benefits at present. However, it should have been done over a period of at least ten years, probably more.

I forecast a further coalition Government with two or possibly three parties meeting secretly to draw up their evil plans. Time for democracy and proportional representation.
+4 #3 tintack 2015-03-20 21:45
Quote:
Perhaps not surprisingly, most of the media have paid little attention to the plan in this week’s budget to impose £12 billion of unspecified cuts on the benefits bill.
No surprises there then. The Tory press has been very good at making sure its readers don't know what is being done in their name.

Quote:
Meanwhile the Independent finds that voters are unlikely to be told what cuts to benefits the tories are planning as “David Gauke, a Treasury minister, told the BBC the Tories would set out the details after the election”.
In other words, if they let slip what they're planning, even some of those who might vote for them might start to feel queasy. They're scared of telling the truth, so I hope Labour and the media will press them relentlessly on this. I'm not optimistic, but it really needs to happen. The public needs to know exactly what they're voting for.
+4 #2 Bill 2015-03-20 15:46
Quote:
“David Gauke, a Treasury minister, told the BBC the Tories would set out the details after the election”.
Really ?

Shocking.

Bill
+6 #1 elaine 2015-03-20 15:38
The Guardian graphic is quite scary enough, showing half the benefit bill is ring-fenced from cuts - but, even more scary, it only shows pensions and pension credit as ring-fenced. Surely, if all pensioner benefits are to be ring-fenced, then the whole of Attendance Allowance and TV Licences, and a proportion of Housing Benefit and DLA, which are paid to pensioners, should also be within the ring-fence. So the £12bn cuts will be even more concentrated on the rest of us.

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