Spending cuts ‘targeted at disadvantaged groups’

Cuts in public spending have been targeted at people who are already disadvantaged, according to a new report from the Centre for Welfare Reform think tank.

Drawing on official statistics, the report examines the effects of coalition measures such as increases in VAT, cuts in benefits and tax credits, and cuts in local authority funding.

Key findings

  • People in poverty (20 per cent of the population) are bearing 36 per cent of the total cuts – nearly twice as much as average. By 2015-16 people in poverty will be £2,744 a year worse off as a result of the cuts.
  • Disabled people in poverty (4 per cent of the population) are bearing 13 per cent of the total cuts – over three times as much as average. By 2015-16 disabled people in poverty will be £4,660 a year worse off.
  • People who need help from social services (3 per cent of the population) are bearing 13 per cent of the total cuts – over four times as much as average. By 2015-16 people using social care will be £6,409 a year worse off.

The author of the report, Simon Duffy, said: 'It is shocking to discover how unfairly these cuts have been distributed. Our sense of fair play seems to have vanished. Even more worrying has been the effort to disguise these cuts by the use of shameful rhetoric, directed at disabled people and other minority groups'.

Source: Simon Duffy, Counting the Cuts: What the Government Doesn't Want the Public to Know, Centre for Welfare Reform
LinksReport | CWR press release

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Publication date: 
Feb 16 2014