£53 a week? Of course we all could! - True grit in politics.
April 5, 2013 3:00 PM Subscribe
posted by glasseyes (57 comments total)
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On Monday, the British Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, Iain Duncan Smith
, made a rather rash claim on BBC Radio 4. Hijinks ensue
. 'Duncan Smith came under pressure after he told BBC Radio 4's Today programme on Monday that he could live on £53 ($81/week) after he was asked about a market trader, David Bennett, who claimed that he had to live on that amount after his housing benefit was cut. "If I had to, I would," Duncan Smith replied." ' from The Guardian
. Since then a petition
has started challenging him to try it. Petition has gathered 440,133 signatures in 5 days. Original report
. There is a secondary petition
going: this one is guaranteed to be debated in Parliament if it gets 100,000 signatures.
There are a lot of details about the benefits system in comments to the Guardian posts. £53/week is the lowest rate of Jobseekers' Allowance, paid to claimants under 25, and includes no extras of any sorts. The background to this, apart from the recession, is the introduction of a new system
on April 1st, which will increase the rent paid by council tenants with extra bedrooms.
Meanwhile other petitions have been springing up
on the government e-petitions board.