COST-OF-LIVING PAYMENTS WILL ‘BARELY SCRATCH THE SURFACE’, WARNS WEST DUNBARTONSHIRE’S MP

Photo: Martin speaking in the House of Commons.

West Dunbartonshire’s MP has warned the UK government further action is required to tackle the worsening cost-of-living crisis, as it’s announced that the first of two payments to help qualifying low-income households will hit people’s bank accounts from 14th July.

Local MP Martin Docherty-Hughes welcomed the Chancellor’s confirmation that a payment of £326 would be made to eligible low-income households by the end of July, with a second payment of £324 set to follow in the autumn. However, the SNP has criticised the UK government for failing to act sooner and called on further action to help households impacted by soaring fuel, food and energy prices.

It comes as a new study is released by the Institute of Grocery Distribution warns that Brexit is contributing to the rising price of food – with the average monthly spend on groceries for a family of four set to reach £439 in January next year, up from £396 at the start of this year.

Food banks in West Dunbartonshire are facing rising demand, as families and individuals are hit by soaring inflation which the Office for National Statistics says is at a 40 year high of 9 per cent.

The SNP has repeatedly pressed the UK government for action on the cost-of-living crisis – calling for a reverse of the £1020 cut to Universal Credit cut, the scrapping of the regressive National Insurance tax hike, and introduction of a Real Living Wage to boost incomes.

Commenting, Martin Docherty-Hughes MP said:

“Across Clydebank, Dumbarton and the Vale of Leven, far too many of my constituents are struggling to get by just now.

“With soaring fuel, food and energy prices, it’s outrageous that Boris Johnson’s government has sat on its hands for so long.

“The long-awaited measures announced by the Chancellor – welcome though they are – will barely scratch the surface with the skyrocketing rate of inflation hammering households just now.

“I’ve spoken in the Commons many times about the impact of the UK’s cost-of-living crisis on people in West Dunbartonshire, but as ever this Tory government turns a blind eye.

“Scotland is an energy-rich country, but we’re paying a heavy price for the cost of living under Westminster rule.”

Details of eligibility for the cost-of-living payments to low-income households across Scotland, England, Wales and Northern Ireland are available here.