“Prosperity gap widens as welfare cuts hit north hard” says Financial Times front page on 11 April

Much ink has been rightly used to write about the Bedroom Tax and cuts to welfare, but worse is around the corner.

Full credit to the Financial Times in its front page coverage in both its UK and US editions today (link below) where the FT reports on the results of the analysis of welfare cuts it commissioned from Sheffield Hallam University. In short, the impact in poor areas across the north of England will be up to FIVE times worse than in richer areas in the south.

Analysis has shown that the Bedroom Tax will take around £500 million from poorer families during the term of the coalition government, but more insidious still is the recent change in linking benefits down to the CPI lower rate of inflation instead of the more accurate and generous RPI. This change will cut around £11 billion from poorer families in the same term of office of the coalition government.

What the FT front page report today shows is where those families live from who will lose that £11 billion. For example, Blackpool’s local economy will lose £914 for every working age adult living there, whereas Cambridge will lose £247.

And this follows the spacial modelling that the CLES think-tank in Manchester did on the impact of the Bedroom Tax at neighbourhood level, which showed similarly what we knew instinctively, that the poorest places will bear the heaviest loss.

The response by the coalition government to this FT article today is that “our welfare reforms … will help people back to work”.

But how will this happen when unemployment is so high and the local economies of the places where poor people mostly live will get even less income?

Link:
@FinancialTimes: Front page of the Financial Times UK Thursday, April 11 http://t.co/eDTDpmmHnB

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