Welfare cuts to hit Midlothian hard

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Welfare cuts will have a “huge” impact on county residents who face years of “real hardship”, MSP Colin Beattie has warned.

As previously reported in the Advertiser, county residents stand to suffer a £16,903,581 loss due to cuts of around £17million a year. The cuts are a product of the Welfare Bill, which was introduced by the UK Government on February 16.

Mr Beattie, speaking at a public meeting in Bonnyrigg last week, said that with more than 600 active cases, he and his small team – based at his office in Dalkeith – were struggling to cope with demand.

He said: “I have to frankly say that it is going to get worse. With the bill coming through and the cuts coming from that, people who are most disadvantaged are going to be looking for help – and that help is going to be very difficult to find.”

Welfare cuts will see more than 75 per cent of 680 Housing Benefit claimants hit by total annual losses of £308,000.

Read full story in the March 22 edition of the Midlothian Advertiser.