Backlash could lead to U-turn on tax credits

Mary Creagh.
Mary Creagh.

A controversial move to cut tax credits for thousands of poor families could be watered down after a backlash in parliament.

Proposed tax credit cuts will affect thousands of families around the district and leave low-income workers £1,300-a-year worse off.

Tory MPs won a vote in the House of Commons on the move but the House of Lords defeated it and demanded changes.

Chancellor George Osborne then said he would lessen the impact on families - but still vowed to press ahead with billions of pounds in cuts to welfare benefits.

Wakefield MP Mary Creagh has launched a petition to stop tax credit cuts on her website www.marycreagh.com

The petition reads: “The Tories have broken their promise to stand up for working people with a plan to cut tax credits, which will leave families £1,300 a year worse off.

“In Wakefield 7,300 families with children claim tax credits. Nearly 6 out of 10 families receive this vital support.”

Nationally, up to three million families could be worse off as a result of tax credit cuts.

More details on the measures are expected in Mr Osborne’s autumn budget statement at the end of November.

He faced a grilling on the measures at Treasury questions on Tuesday. Mr Osborne told MPs: “We will continue to reform tax credits and save the money needed so that Britain lives within its means, while at the same time lessening the impact on families during the transition.

“We are as determined as ever to have a low tax, low welfare, high wage economy that Britain needs and the British people want to see.”

Tax credits were brought in by the last Labour government to top up the earnings of low paid families.