Glasgow conservative advisers demanded to explain ‘disastrous decision’ to cut universal credit
Glasgow’s conservative councilors have been accused by the city’s treasurer of trying to deceive voters as he asked them to explain their party’s ‘disastrous decision’ to cut universal credit.
A £ 20 increase – introduced in April last year in the wake of the Covid-19 pandemic – is expected to be removed from October.
SNP adviser Ricky Bell said: ‘This brutal cut will plunge so many Glasgow families into unmanageable poverty and once again Boris’ boys in Glasgow are nowhere to be found.
“Cllr Thomas Kerr and his gang are rarely short of opinions on anything other than the devastating impact their party policies and actions have on ordinary Glasgow people, those already struggling under the pressure of a decade of ‘austerity.”
He added that Glasgow’s Conservative advisers are “foot soldiers of the most toxic right-wing administration in our history”.
Glasgow Tories group leader Cllr Kerr said UK government investments in Scotland had totaled £ 14bn since the start of the pandemic, and accused Cllr Bell of ‘deviation tactics’.
But Cllr Bell, the city’s treasurer, thinks the Tories should explain to residents “why their party is cutting more than £ 1,000 a year from our poorest and most hurried families”.
He said the move would “wipe out the positive impact” of the Scottish Child Payment – a payment of £ 10 per week for every child under 6 you care for.
“When it comes to defending virtually any of their own policies, policies that affect the real lives of Glasgowians, there is not a glance from the city’s Tories.
“Here in Glasgow we provide food for children during the summer holidays, we have expanded free school meals faster than anywhere else in Scotland and increased subsidies for school clothing to give families a better deal.”
Glasgow and the Scottish government must “stand up for our most vulnerable in the Conservatives’ war against them,” added Cllr Bell.
“The Conservatives in Glasgow can pretend it’s not them. They can pretend that the Glasgow challenges are someone else’s problem. But the truth is, they are Glasgow’s foot soldiers for the most toxic right-wing administration in our history.
“It’s on them. It is time for them to accept being conservative and speak out or shut up.
In response, Cllr Kerr said, “The SNP deflection tactics are clear to see.
“They’d rather talk about Westminster than tackle Glasgow’s problems. With hundreds of people dying from drugs each year in places like Possil and Springburn, all the SNP wants to do is focus on London. The city might not be in half its state if it focuses on the job at hand. ”
The leader of the Conservative Group said the leave scheme, introduced by the UK government, had saved hundreds of thousands of Scottish jobs.
“The SNP government’s own statistics released this week show in black and white the benefit of pooling resources on these islands, with Scots enjoying a union dividend of £ 2,200 per person.
“In contrast, Cllr Bell’s SNP-led council has responded to the pandemic by taking £ 100 from the pockets of Glasgow retirees by removing the affordable heat dividend.
“His dire environmental policies have created a clean-up crisis on the streets of Glasgow, with cuts in garbage collection and increased bulk loads exacerbating our city’s nightmare of fly spills.”