In the weeks preceding today’s Budget I have received many letters from working families frightened that their tax credits may be cut.
Tax credits provide precious and targeted support to millions of families and in Stockport alone 11,900 children are living in families that rely on them to make ends meet.
Already their family income is being squeezed by low pay and rising housing costs, which are the real causes of high welfare bills.
Many charities and campaign groups have raised serious concerns about the Chancellor’s plans to cut tax credits and the four children’s commissioners in the UK have raised serious concerns that child poverty is already unacceptably high.
In an ideal world employers should be paying better wages and families should not have to rely on tax credits to top up their income.
But the sad fact is that until we get a living wage and tackle rising housing costs many people do have to rely on tax credits to keep their head above water.
They are some of the hardest working people you could hope to meet and it would seem unfair to hit them when it is not their fault that they need tax credits to give them a decent standard of living.