£37m tax credit cuts bombshell for Leeds families

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Leeds families are set to lose out on almost £37 million under Government changes to tax credits.

Figures from the House of Commons Library - highlighted by Leeds City Council’s Lib Dem group - show that over 36,000 families will be affected across Leeds, including more than 56,000 children.

These families will lose a total of £36.7 million from the tax credit changes, an average of £1,000 per household.

Leeds Lib Dem group leader Coun Stewart Golton today called for the government to put a stop to its plans, which were debated in Parliament last week.

Coun Golton said: “More than 56,000 Leeds children will be thrown into severe hardship as a result of the government’s cruel and ideologically driven cuts to tax credits.

“Families already close to the breadline face losing £36 million in total. The government likes to say it is on the side of working families. If there is any truth to that claim they will call a halt to this programme that puts the heaviest burden of spending cuts on those least able to shoulder it.”

Meanwhile a new poll released by campaigning group 38 Degrees found that 58 per cent of people in Yorkshire say they want a u-turn on the tax credits cuts.

And, in a further blow to the Government on the issue, a peer who is leading threats to block cuts to tax credits unless the government eases the impact on low-paid families, has complained of being subjected to “bullying tactics” by chancellor George Osborne.

The Chancellor is under mounting pressure to mitigate the effect of the policy, with opposition parties and rebel Tory MPs threatening defeats in the Lords and Commons next week.

Crossbencher Baroness Meacher complained at the way she and others were treated over proposed “fatal” amendments that would kill off the policy.

“There has been enormous pressure coming from the Treasury, the Chancellor of the Exchequer, upon peers,” she told BBC Radio 4’s Week in Westminster.

“The weight on me has been unspeakable really. I think it’s bullying tactics.”

Some reports suggested Mr Osborne could announce action to mitigate the losses in his Autumn Statement on November 25.