The SNP has called for a U-turn on Tory plans to cut benefits for NHS and Social Care workers in receipt of the Scottish Government’s £500 ‘Thank You’ payment – after new figures revealed the Tory government could claw back more than ninety per cent from workers.
New research from the House of Commons Library shows that Care Home workers, NHS porters, healthcare support workers, nurses and paramedics claiming tax credits and housing benefit could have as much as 90.9% of the £500 payment clawed back by the UK government, leaving them with less than £50.
In December, the UK government admitted it plans to deduct benefit payments from those workers in receipt of the Scottish Government’s ‘Thank You’ payment.
In answer to a Written Parliamentary Question, Tory Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Welfare Delivery Will Quince MP dismissed Neil Gray MP’s calls to ensure workers could keep the payment in full.
Commenting, SNP Shadow Work and Pensions Secretary Neil Gray MP (pictured) said:
“Boris Johnson must U-turn on Tory plans to cut benefits for NHS and social care workers receiving the Scottish Government’s £500 ‘Thank You’ payment.
“It is cruel and unacceptable that Care Home workers, NHS porters, healthcare support workers, nurses and paramedics claiming social security could see up to ninety per cent of this payment taken away by the Tory government.
“This payment helps recognise the extraordinary role frontline workers have played tackling coronavirus throughout this crisis, and it should be received in full without any deductions from Westminster.
“Instead of taking money away from NHS and care workers, the Tories should follow Scotland’s lead and ensure workers across the UK get the recognition they deserve – especially given the impact of coronavirus over the winter.
“It beggars belief that after a decade of Tory austerity cuts, which have pushed millions of people into poverty, the Tory government is planning further cuts – including a public sector pay freeze, which will leave so many frontline workers poorer and worse off.
“Scotland shouldn’t have to wait for Westminster to act.
“It is clearer than ever that the only way to protect Scotland’s interests and build the fair and equal society we all want to see is to become an independent country – with the full powers to make our own decisions.”