Osborne’s planned cuts to disability benefits have been removed from the budget and in parliament yesterday he apologised for his ‘mistake’ in proposing to remove them. However, he refused to apologise when pressed for the rationale behind the cuts with the end goal being to reduce the Nation’s budget deficit.
Iain Duncan Smith resigned from his position as work and pensions secretary over the proposed cuts to disability benefits. He stated that he had not been consulted on the issue and referred to the budget, in particular with reference to the disability personal independence payments cut, as ‘deeply unfair’.
Osborne apologised for including the cut to disability benefits and this move has now been reversed.
What seems clear from this situation is that little is safe from the Chancellor’s ambitions to meet his budget promises. Many will have seen the increases in council tax statements from 1 April 2016 in their mail with a specific mention of adult social care. Quite whether this increase will be enough to ease adult social care funding pressures remains to be seen especially in more deprived areas where council tax receipts are low.