My letter on Tax Credits

Dear editor,


Next year 22,900 families across Barnet  and 11,900 families in  Camden will suffer as a result of the Conservative Government’s decision to deliver a real terms cut to tax credits. Those falling victim to the Conservative Chancellor’s punishing measures will justifiably be left angry by the Mayor of London’s failure to stand up for their interests, despite his weasel words on the matter.


It’s expected that 551,000 families across London could be affected by the changes, which come as part of government plans to slash £12bn from the Welfare Bill. Plans to freeze tax credits for four years mean a real terms cut in support for some of the poorest people in our society, many of whom are in work and are reliant on tax credits to top up low wages. Perhaps the cruellest part is that over a million children in our capital could suffer in the process.


Now, more than ever, the vulnerable in our society need the support of the Mayor. Boris Johnson has gone on the radio to criticise the policy. He also appears to recognise that we cannot balance the books by making people on low wages even poorer, stating that tax credit withdrawal should be ‘in step’ with increases in wages.


However, when he had the opportunity to express that opposition in Parliament he failed to do so.


If Mayor Johnson MP  is serious about defending the interests of Londoners, he now needs to take every step possible –including his vote- to mitigate the impact of these heartless cuts in Parliament,  as does the Conservative candidate for mayor, Zac Goldsmith MP.


Yours sincerely




Andrew Dismore

Labour London Assembly Member for Barnet and Camden