Boris Johnson’s UK Tory government has refused point blank to respond to the SNP Government’s appeals to reverse planned cuts to Universal Credit, plunging 60,000 Scots into poverty.
Earlier this week, Scotland’s Social Security Secretary, Shirley-Anne Somerville, revealed the SNP Government are yet to receive a response from Westminster after five separate pleas to maintain the £20 uplift to Universal Credit have fallen on deaf ears.
The uplift to Universal Credit of £20 a week has been a vital lifeline for thousands of families in Scotland, but the Tories’ refusal to extend it threatens to plunge 20,000 Scottish children deeper into poverty.
There are also calls to extend the uplift to legacy benefits such as Employment and Support Allowance and Jobseekers Allowance.
Many who claim legacy benefits have disabilities and long-term health conditions and have faced higher costs throughout the pandemic.
Responding to the revelations, the SNP’s Stewart Stevenson said:
“It is deeply insulting to thousands of Scots that this Westminster government doesn’t even have the decency to respond to the SNP Government’s pleas to reverse these planned cuts to Universal Credit.
“The £20 uplift was a welcome relief for many families, but the pandemic is not over, and the Tories must not snatch this away from people at a time when they need it most.
“Even some Tory MPs this week have called on Boris Johnson to U-turn on the plans and make the uplift permanent.
“But call after call for this Tory government to do the right thing have simply been ignored.
“Away from brutal Westminster cuts, Tory austerity, and with one hand tied behind its back, Scotland has built a social security system based on fairness, dignity and respect.
“With the full powers of independence, we can go further and build a full benefits system that really works for the people of Scotland.”