Poorest hit hardest by Osborne’s “heartless” budget

Angus MP Mike Weir has highlighted new research from the Resolution Foundation which shows that people in the poorest income bracket have lost out most from the Tories summer budget and that the new National ‘Living Wage’ will not offset cuts to benefits.

The Resolution Foundation report finds that the National ‘Living Wage’ “clearly cannot offset” social security cuts and that people in the lowest income decile will be over £800 worse off every year by 2020 as a result of the UK budget. It also finds that by 2020 under half (45 per cent) of the net income gains from this new Minimum Wage rate will go to households in the bottom half of the income distribution.

The SNP has previously revealed that 160,000 under 25s in Scotland will continue to earn less than the National ‘Living Wage’ and that those aged under 18 will lose £6,493.50 than colleagues over 25.

In this week’s Programme for Government the First Minister reaffirmed the SNP government’s commitment to the real Living Wage. The First Minister has set the ambitious goal of having 500 accredited Living Wage employers by March 2016 and already over 300 organisations have achieved accreditation.

Commenting, Mr Weir said:

“This report again confirms that the Tories new National ‘Living Wage’ is nothing more than a con-trick – designed to mask massive cuts to social security. We already know that under 18s will now be entitled to thousands less than colleagues doing the same job. Now we know that less than half the gains from this enhanced Minimum Wage rate will go to the bottom half of the income distribution.

“While we welcome the increase in the Minimum Wage for over 25s, this report finds that it will do little to offset the impact of the budget – particularly for the poorest households. Shamefully, by 2020 those in the poorest households will be more than £800 worse off every single year due to the Tories heartless budget cuts.

“By contrast, the Scottish Government continues to promote the real Living Wage – with more than 300 Scottish-based organisations, including the Scottish Government itself, now accredited Living Wage employers.”
ENDS

Notes:

The Resolution Foundation report, Higher ground: who gains from the National Living Wage?, can be found here: http://resolutionfoundation.org/wp-content/uploads/2015/09/NLW.pdf