Westminster welfare reform to trigger rise in child poverty, says IFS

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Analysis by the Institute for Fiscal Studies (IFS) has revealed that Westminster’s benefit cuts will trigger a 4% rise in child poverty across the British State, with Wales set to be hit disproportionately.

The IFS says that absolute child poverty will increase by around 4% across the British State with three quarters of the increase (equivalent of 400,000 children) attributable to Westminster’s benefit policies.

Wales is one of the areas hit hardest by the policy changes, as a country in which poor households get more income from benefits and less from earnings, or where there are more low income households with at least three children who will be affected by the limiting of means-tested benefits to two children.

Plaid Cymru’s Work & Pensions spokesperson, Hywel Williams MP, said:

“This is a sobering indictment of Westminster policies and how they impact on Wales.

“Some of us are in the business of building and strengthening the Welsh economy, yet some of the decisions taken in Westminster mean that we are having to work with one hand tied behind out backs.

“Those in charge in Westminster should read these figures with shame, knowing that their actions are leading towards a substantial rise in children living in poverty.

“Plaid Cymru has consistently opposed Westminster’s welfare reforms and we firmly believe that responsibility over the administration of justice in Wales should be taken away from Westminster and transferred to Wales so the Welsh Government can act to mitigate the worst of Westminster’s welfare reforms.

“It is disappointing that Labour and the Tories have so far teamed-up to block Plaid Cymru’s attempts to transfer responsibility and instead protected Westminster-rule. We will continue to do all we can to block these reforms in Westminster and allow Wales to mitigate their effects.”

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