This is an article for the Glamorgan Gazette
The Welsh Liberal Democrats have calculated that 8,200 families in Bridgend and Ogmore will lose out under Conservative plans to cut tax credits.
Figures produced by the House of Commons Library show over three million low-income working families currently in receipt of tax credits will see their entitlement reduced UK-wide as part of the Government’s proposals.
The change will mean a total loss of £9m to families in our area with the average family losing £750 a year.
Despite claims from the Conservatives that those affected will benefit from plans to increase the minimum wage, the independent Institute for Fiscal Studies has said Tory figures don’t stack up.
The IFS analysis shows a £750 average loss will only be offset by £200 as a result of the new minimum wage.
Liberal Democrats have opposed the move as it undermines the work of the Coalition Government, to make sure it always pays more to be in work than on benefits.
Study after study have shown that the Conservative’s claim to be supporting low income families through a minimum wage increase does not make up for these cuts. They need to be honest with those doing the right thing and going out to work.
However, when the Liberal Democrats sought to block the move in the House of Lords, Labour refused to support us, preferring to postpone the cuts instead.
I am pleased that George Osborne is now reconsidering his proposals. Unfortunately, his proposed living wage is nowhere near the amount calculated by independent bodies to ensure that those in work do not have to rely on these tax credits to survive.
There needs to be a fundamental rethink about the amounts employers should pay before tax credits can be safely scaled back.