The SNP has condemned as “callous and disgraceful but not at all surprising” reports today that Scots Secretary Alister Jack (pictured) failed to even reply to an invitation from the Poverty Alliance to discuss the Tories’ £20 cut in Universal Credit.
And as Scotland faces a winter of discontent with the deepening cost of living crisis, SNP MSP Neil Gray warned this is just the tip of the iceberg of what is coming in the next few months for ordinary families.
Mr Gray, convener of the Scottish Parliament’s social justice committee, said:
“Axing the £20 Universal Credit lifeline and condemning thousands of desperate families to a miserable winter of poverty is deeply immoral – but the Tories just don’t care.
“Alister Jack has absolutely no experience of living in poverty.
“His callous disdain for those who will pay the biggest price for his Government’s obscene policy decisions is sickening.
“He has already admitted he doesn’t know anyone on Universal Credit, so it comes as no surprise he would ignore people fighting for a better social security safety net, like the Poverty Alliance.
“To snub them when they are only looking for explanations is callous and disgraceful but not at all surprising.
“This Tory Government just doesn’t care.
“And the terrifying reality for most people is that the current cost of living crisis is just the tip of the iceberg.
“With the impending hike in National Insurance, this is just the start and those struggling now are really going to feel the financial stranglehold tighten further next April when the Tories put the heaviest burden on ordinary working people – but not on their millionaire backers.
“Meanwhile, the SNP Scottish Government will continue to do all it can within its financial constraints to help families with increased costs or lost income, like the £130 pandemic payment being paid this month.
“However, it’s clear the only way to protect Scotland from damaging Westminster control is by becoming an independent country with the full suite of powers to help its citizens – like all other normal countries.”