Ministers claim disabled people hit by cuts will be supported by more employment advisers, but 23 Jobcentres across Scotland are to be axed.
The Scottish National Party has criticised the Tories for announcing plans to try to lessen the impact of their devastating £30 a week cut to the incomes of disabled people by putting more advisers in Jobcentres – mere months after announcing plans to slash the numbers of Jobcentres across Scotland.
In November, MPs from nine parties – including Conservative MPs – supported the SNP’s calls for the cut to ESA to be postponed until alternative financial support was introduced. Despite DWP Ministers promising that a package of additional measures would be introduced, nothing has happened.
Earlier in the week, DWP Ministers announced that the only additional measures would be more employment advisers in Jobcentres to allow for more “one-to-one work and health conversations” but this comes after Tory plans revealed 23 Jobcentres across Scotland will be axed – with a 50% cut to Jobcentres in Glasgow – leaving many disabled people struggling to get to their nearest Jobcentre.
Neil Gray MP, the SNP’s Fair Work and Employment spokesperson, said: “The Tories have slashed £30 a week from the incomes of people who are unable to work through chronic ill-health or disability and have said additional support will be provided by staff in Job Centres – but the Tories want to drastically reduce the number of Job Centres across Scotland.
“This so-called additional support will come as a very hollow promise to disabled people who are struggling to make ends meet and worried about paying the bills.