Andrew Gwynne, MP for Denton and Reddish, spoke in a House of Commons debate this week to alert Ministers to huge flaws in the proposed Universal Credit system which would hit low paid working families in Stockport and Tameside.

The Universal Credit system is being developed by the Coalition Government to streamline the working tax credit and housing benefit system, but its shortcomings have been heavily criticised in the House.

In his Commons speech, Andrew Gwynne MP said:

“Making work pay should be supported by everyone in the House, but there are worrying signs in the Government’s proposals and unless they heed them, I fear that they will fail in their ambitions.

“Unless the Government gets a real grip on these issues, the new system will fail, particularly in constituencies such as Denton and Reddish where, sadly, the damage could be lasting.”

Following his speech, Mr Gwynne commented:

“Most worrying are the cuts to housing benefit, and tax credits, which along with future changes to council tax benefit, could really penalise those families in work and struggling to make ends meet.”

Baroness Tanni Grey-Thompson, one of Britain’s greatest ever Paralympians, has said of the welfare changes:

“Cuts—such as those to support for most disabled children, and disabled adults living alone—are going to make the future considerably bleaker for many of the most disadvantaged households in Britain.”

NOTES:

Tameside (along with Oldham and Wigan) has been announced as part of the Greater Manchester Pathfinder, which will see the introduction of the Universal Credit system for new claimants some six months before the national roll-out.

The Universal Credit and Welfare Reform debate in the House of Commons on 11th September can be viewed here:

http://www.publications.parliament.uk/pa/cm201213/cmhansrd/cm120911/debtext/120911-0001.htm#12091139000001

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