North Ayrshire & Arran’s Katy Clark was one of just two Labour MPs from Scotland who rebelled during a House of Commons vote last week, refusing to support Tory Government legislation that will introduce a cap to social security benefits.
The move to place a ceiling of £119.5bn
on the UK’s total benefits bill, irrespective of actual need, was
passed by 520 votes to 22. The Labour Party officially supported the
Tory-Lib Dem Government. All six SNP MPs voted against the cap.
respected charity Save the Children indicated the arbitrary cap being
imposed on benefits would result in an additional 345,000 UK children
being plunged into poverty. However, Labour’s Shadow Chancellor of the
Exchequer, Ed Balls MP, claimed the cap had originally been his party’s
idea, adding, “We on this side of the House support capping social
For the SNP, Eilidh Whiteford MP said, “The
SNP voted against the welfare cap because it piles yet more pain onto
our poorest pensioners, carers, disabled people and low income families.
This cap is just a crude, blunt, instrument. It is shocking that so
many Scottish Labour MPs have backed the Tories.”
House of Commons vote, Katy Clark acted as a teller for those opposing
what is effectively a limit on help for the poorest members of society.
The local MP said, “The cap alters the principle of the welfare state
away from need and towards what a Tory Chancellor committed to permanent
austerity says we can afford. A much better way of bringing down
social security spending would be to focus on increasing employment, a
living wage and building affordable homes.”