The UKIP manifesto published today contains policies which will appeal to many claimants, but also fully endorses George Osborne’s economic plans for the next parliament, which include £12 billion in cuts to benefits.
UKIP’s manifesto includes a number of pro-claimant policies, such as pledges to:
- scrap the bedroom tax
- end ‘unfair ATOS-style Work Capability Assessments and return assessments to GPs or appropriate specialist consultants’
- increase carer’s allowance from £62.10 a week £73.10 a week, in line with JSA
- continue to pay housing benefit to young people under the age of 25
However, the manifesto also supports ‘a lower cap on benefits’ and ‘limiting child benefit to two children for new claimants’.
Most alarmingly of all , the manifesto says very clearly that UKIP supports George Osborne’s fiscal plans:
“While this current Treasury plan is a reasonable target, there is little public faith it will be achieved, coming as is [sic] does in the wake of previous failure. UKIP MPs in the next parliament will make sure the Treasury sticks to this latest plan, with no backsliding.”
So, at this point, as far as sick and disabled claimants are concerned, a vote for UKIP looks like being a vote for £12 billion in Tory benefits cuts, likely to include taxing DLA and PIP , axeing contribution-based JSA and ESA, reducing the work-related activity component of ESA to 50p and cutting the numbers receiving carer’s allowance by 40%.