Tax credits cut could see 11,000 families in Thurrock struggle

CHILDREN’S charity Barnados estimates more than 11,000 families in Thurrock could be left struggling if plans to cut tax credits go ahead.

Barnardo’s is urging politicians to keep the ‘lifeline’ benefit and not to cut tax credits following signals from the Government that it will be reduced, with some families potentially losing it completely.

This is part of possible plans to axe £12bn from the welfare bill, expected to be announced in this week’s Budget.

The charity has calculated that 11,300 or 52.2 percent of families in the area currently use tax credits to top up low incomes – helping them buy essentials such as food and clothing for the family. If the cut goes ahead 21,600 children in Thurrock stand to be affected.

Barnardo’s Chief Executive Javed Khan said: “Without this income, many parents could not afford their weekly food shopping let alone school uniforms and books. With low wages and high living costs stretching budgets across Thurrock, tax credits are an everyday lifeline for British families.

“Children who grow up poor are more likely to be ill, do worse at school and be jobless in future. If as a society we fail to invest in children now, we will all bear the costs in the future.

“Families would be better off if the government focused on tackling low wages and high childcare costs, instead of cutting struggling families income.”

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