GOVERNMENT PLANS FOR major cuts to Tax Credits sparked further exchanges this week at Westminster between Moray’s MP and the Prime Minister.
During Prime Minister’s questions Mr Robertson asked the PM if he had “even the faintest idea” what the cost of his tax credits cuts meant to people.
Moray’s MP and the leader of the SNP opposition at Westminster highlighted how many families in his own constituency would suffer with having to make choices this winter between feeding their children or heating their homes.
A total of 200,000 Scottish families will be on average £1300 worse off each year as a result of the cuts – prompting the Moray MP to lead an attack by backing an opposition day motion that called on the UK Government to think again on cuts that are due to be implemented in April.
The MP has been highlighting that there are currently 4700 families on tax credits in Moray – and nearly 80% of those are working families. Around 8100 children associated with these families could be affected by the cuts.
Mr Robertson said: “These changes will significantly reduce the incomes of more than many households in Moray where choices have to be made between eating and heating, and where families have to decide whether they will have to go to the food bank again this week.
“I have been contacted by many, many constituents in Moray who have already been hammered by welfare cuts – and these further cuts will not only hit even more families in Moray, but by taking support away from those families there is then significantly less money in our local economy.
“These are staggering amounts of money to take out of the poorest households – for a significant number it will be well in excess of one thousand pounds per year.
“Politics is always about choice and the Conservatives could choose not to spend £100billion on Trident. They could choose not to raise the threshold of inheritance tax. They could choose to close tax loopholes they know about but ignore, rather than balancing the books on the backs of the working poor.
“There is a clear contrast with a Tory Government in Westminster attacking the poor and a Scottish Government using their powers to protect the poorest and most vulnerable in our society.
“The Scottish Government have invested £100million to ensure no one pays the bedroom tax and invested £40million to protect council tax benefit. That is a caring, compassionate Scottish Government.
“With full powers over welfare and taxation the Scottish Government would follow a different route than that being taken by the Prime Minister and his Cabinet.”