Benefits set for squeeze at Wednesday’s Autumn Statement
The Prime Minister hit out at a ‘nationwide scandal’ wherein there are round two million folks of working age in Britain who’re ‘not working in any respect’.
Mr Sunak despaired at ‘an infinite waste of human potential’ and vowed to ‘do extra to help those that can work to take action’.
Any tax cuts introduced by Mr Hunt at his Autumn Statement on Wednesday could possibly be funded by reductions to advantages.
The Chancellor is claimed to be contemplating utilizing final month’s inflation determine of 4.6 per cent to set the rise for working-age advantages subsequent 12 months.
This can be as an alternative of utilizing September’s determine of 6.7 per cent, which is the determine historically used for uprating welfare funds.
The Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) this morning put MPs on alert for a looming advantages squeeze by giving discover of an ‘advert hoc’ replace on welfare uprating.
But the Treasury dismissed the prospect of scrapping winter gas funds for wealthier pensioners as a part of prices financial savings.
This was regardless of a Cabinet minister suggesting money spent on assist for heating payments can be higher used to sort out youngster poverty.
The Prime Minister hit out at a ‘nationwide scandal’ wherein there are round two million folks of working age in Britain who’re ‘not working in any respect’
Both Rishi Sunak and Chancellor Jeremy Hunt, pictured at a university in north London, have pledged motion to drive down the variety of folks out of labor resulting from long-term illness
Former pensions minister Steve Webb, who served within the coalition authorities, described a ‘profit cuts alert’ after DWP put out discover of an ‘advert hoc’ statistical launch on Wednesday
Latest figures confirmed the speed of inflation fell to 4.6 per cent final month, which was down from 6.7 per cent in September
In his speech, the PM mentioned that ‘rewarding onerous work additionally means reforming our welfare system’.
‘We imagine within the inherent dignity of job. And we imagine that work – not welfare – is one of the best route out of poverty,’ he added.
‘Yet proper now, round two million folks of working age should not working in any respect.
‘That is a nationwide scandal and an infinite waste of human potential. So, we should do extra to help those that can work, to take action.
‘And we’ll clamp down on welfare fraudsters. Because the system have to be honest for the taxpayers who fund it.
‘By doing all of this, by getting folks off welfare and into work, we are able to higher help these genuinely in want of a security web.’
Downing Street mentioned there are presently 2.4million advantages claimants in receipt of incapacity advantages who’ve been discovered to have restricted capability for work and work-related exercise.
Mr Sunak declined to ‘pre-empt’ any bulletins a few attainable welfare squeeze – by way of Mr Hunt choosing a decrease inflation fee for uprating – forward of the Autumn Statement.
But former pensions minister Steve Webb, who served within the coalition authorities, described a ‘profit cuts alert’ after DWP put out discover of their ‘advert hoc’ statistical launch on Wednesday.
He wrote on Twitter: ‘Benefit cuts alert – DWP simply issued a discover… of an ‘advert hoc’ publication on profit upratings on Wednesday – in years the place they merely pay inflation, they do not do that.
‘Looks like this can be their defensive doc, justifying utilizing the newer inflation determine.’
Ahead of the Autumn Statement, the Chancellor has already introduced a recent welfare crackdown as a part of his push to get folks again into work.
Free prescriptions and authorized assist can be reduce off for profit claimants who’re deemed match to work and don’t search employment.
The Treasury additionally mentioned digital instruments can even be used to ‘observe’ attendance at job gala’s and interviews beneath a toughened sanctions regime.
But there will not be a squeeze on the price of winter gas funds after the Treasury slapped down Cabinet minister John Glen when he raised the prospect of scrapping assist for wealthier pensioners.
Mr Glen, who labored within the Treasury till final week’s reshuffle, questioned whether or not money spent on assist for heating payments can be higher used to sort out youngster poverty.
The winter gas cost sees all pensioners rise up to £600 to help with their power prices in the course of the colder months.
In a leaked recording obtained by the Telegraph, Mr Glen – who was appointed Cabinet Office minister final week – advised the Government ought to act to limit the cost to solely the poorest pensioners.
He pointed to the instance of his mom, who he described as ‘completely snug’, as he claimed she did not want the annual cost.
The Treasury swiftly dismissed Mr Glen’s feedback – wherein he additionally questioned the sustainability of the pensions triple lock – and mentioned there have been no plans to take away the winter gas cost from those that are higher off.
Cabinet minister John Glen has been slapped down by the Treasury after he raised the prospect of scrapping winter gas funds for wealthier pensioners
The winter gas cost sees all pensioners rise up to £600 to help with their power prices in the course of the colder months
Mr Glen was nonetheless Chief Secretary to the Treasury when he make the remarks at a gethering of Cambridge University Conservatives in St John’s College final month.
He mentioned: ‘I feel we additionally want to come back to phrases with the truth that the triple lock may be very costly and the way sustainable is that going ahead when it comes to pensions and all the opposite advantages?
‘Because my mom, she’s not very wealthy however she’s completely snug. She simply texted me as we speak aged 75 to say ‘I’ve simply heard about my £500 winter gas cost’ and I’m similar to ‘you do not want that’.
‘But discovering a mechanism to try to ration that [the winter fuel payment] may be very tough as a result of our HMRC system will have a look at family incomes. These are the types of mechanics of presidency you have to have a look at.
‘Is it higher if we spent extra of that cash on youngster poverty? It in all probability is. But these are the types of issues I feel we have to have a look at.’
Quizzed about Mr Glen’s feedback this morning, Exchequer Secretary to the Treasury Gareth Davies insisted there have been ‘no plans’ to scale back the variety of pensioners eligible to obtain winter gas funds.
He advised Sky News: ‘We should not going to be touching the winter gas allowance.’
Pressed on whether or not he was ruling out means testing the profit, the Treasury minister replied: ‘We haven’t any plans to vary the winter gas allowance.
‘But we’ve got a powerful file of supporting pensioners so we’ll at all times stand by our pensioners to make sure they’ve a dignified retirement and safety in retirement.’
A Government spokesman mentioned: ‘This is just not one thing we’re going to do.’