- The Government’s tax credit cut will hit 4,800 families in Copeland
- Jamie Reed MP backs motion calling on Government to reverse the cut
- House of Commons Library states that families will be on average £1,300 worse off
Copeland MP Jamie Reed has today voted against Government plans to cut tax credits to working families. Figures published by Mr Reed show that the cut will affect 4,800 families in Copeland alone. In fact, 50% of children in Copeland, live in families receiving tax credits.
Anyone living in the UK over the age of 25 can apply for working tax credits and anyone aged over 16 can apply for child tax credits. Their eligibility depends on their income, the hours they work, if they have a disability and if they pay for childcare.
Tax credits are payments made to support families with children, or those in low-paid jobs. The Government changes will mean that the child element in tax credits will be limited to 2 children for new claims and births after April 2017, and the family element in tax credits will be abolished for new claims from 2017. In addition to this, the rate at which working tax credits begin to be withdrawn will fall from £6,420 to £3,850, whilst this will fall from £16,105 to £12,125 for child tax credit. Meanwhile, the taper rate (the rate at which tax credits are withdrawn) will rise from 41% to 48%.
The Independent House of Commons Library have stated that “there is no transitional protection for existing families on tax credits” and that families will be on average £1,300 worse off.
The figures also show that the North West will be the worst affected area of the UK. There are currently 417,800 families claiming tax credits in the North West – making up almost 13% of families claiming tax credits in the UK. 335,800 of these are families with children.
Copeland MP Jamie Reed MP said:
“The Party of the poll tax now want to make those who work hard to provide for their families worse off. The Government must reverse their decision to cut the tax credits that working families rely on.
“Tax credits, which were introduced by the last Labour Government, lifted a record number of children out of poverty. The proportion of children living below the poverty line fell from 35% in 1998/9 to 19% in 2012/13. To reverse this process of lifting families and children out of poverty, which will affect the families in Copeland, is a terrible mistake. Independent studies show that the Chancellor’s Living Wage will not be sufficient to replace the scheme.
“Copeland’s best days are ahead of us, but we need the Government to support low paid families to prosper, rather than removing their tax credits. That is why I voted against the degrading cut”.