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A "perfect storm" of stagnating wages and benefits cuts has led to the gap in life expectancy between the richest and poorest in the England widening, according to new research.A new study, published on Thursday evening, also found that life expectancy for the country's poorest women has fallen by three…
Fresh concerns about the roll-out of controversial Universal Credit (UC) welfare reforms have been voiced by MPs.The Commons Work and Pensions Committee said readiness tests must be set before the next pilot phase of the "managed migration" of transferring existing benefits claimants onto UC begins.The report said that "major areas…
Families on low incomes can apply for a new pregnancy and baby grant from December 10, the Scottish Government has announced.The first payments for the new Best Start Grant will be made before Christmas and eligible applicants will be given £600 to help with their first child.It is £100 more…
Amber Rudd made a dramatic return to Theresa May's Cabinet as the Prime Minister sought to bolster her position following the backlash to her Brexit deal.Meanwhile, Leave-supporting Stephen Barclay has been promoted to Brexit Secretary from a ministerial role in the Department for Health.In a further reduction to the Brexit…
Universal Credit waiting times have "plunged people into misery and despair", according to a United Nations envoy.Professor Philip Alston, the UN Special Rapporteur on extreme poverty and human rights said on Friday the introduction of Universal Credit has caused extreme hardship but could easily be reversed by the Government.He claimed…
Campaigners have called for more action to be taken to help the one million people in Scotland living in poverty.The Poverty Alliance said that 230,000 children are included in the one-million figure.Scotland is the only part of the UK with targets for reducing poverty after the Child Poverty Act was…
A committee of MPs has called for an urgent reassessment of the Government's benefit sanctions regime, warning that the current system appears to be "pointlessly cruel" to some claimants.The human cost of the policy appears "simply too high", with evidence showing that its impact is at best "mixed" and at…
Problems with Universal Credit are driving an increase in the number of emergency supplies handed out at food banks, new figures reveal.The Trussell Trust said its network provided 658,048 supplies between April and September, a 13% increase on the same period a year ago.The charity said that if the five-week…
More Scots are being forced to ask for emergency aid to help with the cost of feeding their families and heating their homes, with six council areas across the country seeing applications for crisis grants rise by 30% or more. Since the Scottish Welfare Fund was set up by ministers…
Jeremy Corbyn criticised Philip Hammond for delivering a "broken promise Budget" as he insisted austerity needs to end because it has failed. The Labour leader said eight years of austerity has "damaged our economy" and delayed the recovery, adding the Government has not abandoned the policy despite the Chancellor's latest…
Philip Hammond's Budget will do nothing for those "massacred" by the Universal Credit welfare reforms, a veteran MP has said. Frank Field, who chairs the Commons' Work and Pensions Committee, poured scorn over the Chancellor's Budget. He told MPs it would do little to help those who have been left…
Philip Hammond used his Budget to offer early tax cuts for millions of workers and extra cash for Whitehall departments, as he began the process of easing austerity. Boosted by improved public finance forecasts, the Chancellor promised a "brighter future" after years of constraint imposed following the financial crash. Measures…
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