Chester MP, Chris Matheson, has expressed deep concern about figures published by the End Child Poverty Coalition last week. The figures reveal that 3,973 children are living in poverty in Chester.

Chris said: “This is a complex issue, but the government could do more to help low income families. For example, they could use the forthcoming autumn statement to end the freeze on child benefit payments. Then as prices rise over the next few years, low income families will be better equipped to pay for the essentials.”

The findings of the report are supported by a recent analysis of Treasury figures by the Labour Party. The figures suggest the average working person is £3,500 a year worse off since the Conservatives came to power. Labour’s analysis compared the 1.3% average annual percentage change in wages in the last six years of the Conservative and coalition governments, with the 3.2% average growth under the last Labour government.

Chris concluded: “It is widely recognised that the Conservative government’s aggressive austerity measures are pushing more and more families below the poverty line and further cuts to Universal Credit will just make this situation even worse. I want the government to look beyond the politics and focus on common sense solutions that could make life a bit easier for people in Chester.”

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