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MPs call for bedroom tax to be scrapped

Tue, 17/12/2013 - 12:59 -- nick

A committee of MPs has called for the government's hated bedroom tax to be scrapped.

The Scottish Affairs Committee, which deals in Westminster with issues north of the border, includes MPs of all parties, although Tory and Liberal Democrat members did not support the report.

Its chairman, Labour MP Ian Davidson, called the tax a "cruel burden" on the poor.

He said:

Government must publish food bank report say MPs

Wed, 04/12/2013 - 14:21 -- nick

A group of MPs has called on the government to publish its long-awaited report on food banks.

The study was delivered to the Department for the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra) in June, but there has been speculation that the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP), headed up by under-fire Iain Duncan Smith, has banned its release.

Universal Credit blasted again by MPs as millions lost

Thu, 07/11/2013 - 13:28 -- nick

The government's Universal Credit system has been blasted again by MPs.

The Public Accounts Committee (PAC) within the House of Commons called the scheme "extraordinarily poor" and said oversight by the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) had been "alarmingly weak".

The Committee believed that much of the £425 million spent to date has been lost forever and will need to be written off.

MPs pay rise higher than a whole year's Jobseeker's Allowance

Thu, 11/07/2013 - 15:54 -- nick

MPs are to get a 10% pay rise of over £6,000 at a time when they have capped benefit rises to 1% over the next three years.

The inflation-busting increase - prices are only rising by 2.7% each year - means politicians will get a higher rise than the total a Jobseeker's Allowance (JSA) claimant gets in a year.

JSA pays £71.70 per week, or £3,728.40 each year, not much more than half of the MP's rise.

Work Programme 'parking' hard-to-help - MPs

Tue, 21/05/2013 - 13:02 -- nick

The Work Programme is 'parking' hard-to-help clients, a committee of MPs has found.

Parking means providing the bare minimum of support to those deemed unlikely to find work due to having personal barriers.

The Work and Pensions Select Committee believes that the higher payments provided to work with hard-to-help clients - including lone parents, older people, those with illnesses and homeless people - are not working.

Unemployed people to be left with just £18 per week for food - MP

Thu, 28/02/2013 - 13:01 -- nick

Labour MP Helen Goodman believes that, after the 'bedroom tax' is introduced, some of her unemployed constituents are likely to have only £18 per week left for food.

To show how hard it is to eat reasonably on this, Goodman spent a week on the £18 diet and made a video blog about her experiences.

She found that she ate an average of 400 calories each day less than she needed, leaving her feeling lethargic.

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