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Social security

Government should follow rules for everyone as they uprate pensions while contemplating benefit cuts

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Today's figures on earnings growth all but confirm pensions will increase by 8.5% in April when the triple lock applies. At the same time the Government is considering not uprating benefits in line with inflation.

Alfie Stirling, Chief Economist at the Joseph Rowntree Foundation said:

“Rising real earnings on average in July is good news. But the effects are not being felt equally and many workers in low paid sectors like retail and hospitality saw their pay fall further behind inflation.

"Thanks to the security of the triple lock, today's data all but confirms the state pension will rise by 8.5% as well. But this throws the situation with benefits into stark relief, where the government have refused to confirm they will even follow their own rules and increase payments in line with September's inflation rate in the usual way.

“The basic rate of universal credit is just £85 per week - £35 per week less than what is needed to cover a basket of life's essentials such as food, basic toiletries and household bills. This is causing severe hardship which the voting public are already concerned is too high and too extreme.

“We need a legal commitment that the basic rate of Universal Credit at least matches the cost of essentials, with benefit rates not treated like a political football while more and more people are unable to put food on the table”.

Young man sat on a bench, looking into the distance with a cap on.

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