80,000 low-paid Merseyside families to be battered by cuts to tax credits (The Liverpool Echo)
Birkenhead MP Frank Field is asking the government to help protect low-paid families from the impact of next year’s tax credit cuts.
Liverpool City Region Child Poverty and Life Chances Commission says around 80,000 people will lose an average of £1,350 per year in the single biggest ever cut to tax credits. As of April 2016, families earning as little as £3,850 will start to see their tax credits cut, whereas before the threshold was £6,420.
Education ‘must be poverty-proofed’ to help poorest children (The National)
EDUCATION must be “poverty-proofed” to help children living under the breadline, a report has said. About 210,000 children across Scotland live in poverty, and one in three children in the country’s biggest city, according to estimates, and a report published today is urging authorities to reduce the cost of the school day to help more pupils achieve.
The report, a year-long project carried out by the Child Poverty Action Group in Scotland (CPAG), has identified several barriers to learning, including access to uniforms, travelling to school, entitlement to free school meals and resources for homework.
Scottish government attacks 'national living wage' plans (BBC )
The UK government's National Living Wage plans have been criticised as a "misappropriation of the term" by the Scottish government.
Under the plans announced by Chancellor George Osborne in July, the minimum wage for over-25s will rise from £6.50 an hour to £7.20 in April next year. It will rise to at least £9 by 2020. The Scottish government said the proposals were "simply an enhancement of the national minimum wage" rather than a true living wage.
Dawn Foster: “Right to buy throws petrol on an already blazing housing crisis” (The Guardian)
It’s a little known fact that Margaret Thatcher wasn’t the supreme architect and advocate of right to buy: the idea had floated around listlessly for decades, and was seized on by then environment secretary Michael Heseltine. While Thatcher had to be convinced of the merits of selling off public assets at a massive discount for no real return, the current Conservative party has set about extending and boosting it with all the glee and fervour of the possessed.
Helping carers and disabled get vital benefits (Third Force News )
A charity coalition will oversee a £192,000 scheme to help disabled people and carers gain access to benefits.
Health and Social Care Alliance Scotland charities are to lead a pilot project which will help vulnerable people apply for welfare payments, while reducing the stress of the application process.
Scottish Government projects will be funded in Dundee, Falkirk, Glasgow and Midlothian to support people who need to be assessed for Personal Independence Payment (PIP) and Employment and Support Allowance (ESA) benefits.