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Tower Hamlets Mayor Lutfur Rahman criticises benefit cap cuts

PUBLISHED: 10:53 11 February 2015

Archant

The government’s plan to cut the benefit cap yet again is cynical political posturing at its worst.

They know they’ve created a climate in which benefit claimants are demonised, and so, therefore, they can win cheap votes on that basis.

Because some party strategist sees the cap as a vote-winner, the Tories wilfully ignore facts.

Evidence that the cap induces people back into work is shaky at best, and most aren’t any better-off when they are forced into low-paid insecure labour. East London charity Community Links’ study confirmed that the most vulnerable - those with mental health issues or with children for instance - were left with additional poverty, stress and no way out.

The cap doesn’t save money but simply attacks people on low incomes in high-rent areas, like Tower Hamlets (where the ‘benefit money’ is going to private landlords not claimants).

After the government earmarked poorer areas like ours for disproportionately savage budget cuts, this is yet another indication of their willingness to abandon the most needy for the sake of a headline grabbing announcement.

Labour, meanwhile, need to step up to the plate, rather than remaining silent when the Tories do things like cutting the Independent Living Fund that helps disabled people stand on their own two feet.

The more time I can spend helping residents resist this government’s callousness, the better. More from Lutfur

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