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PoliticsHome News

PoliticsHome News


Sarah Teather admits she is "extremely worried" by the £26,000 benefits cap

By Isabel Hardman

A Liberal Democrat minister has broken ranks and said she is "extremely worried" by the £26,000 benefit cap for workless families, PoliticsHome has learned.

Sarah Teather told the Family and Parenting Institute this morning that the Government needed to "get the detail right" on the cap, which will apply to all households where no-one works from 2013. She said: "The theory behind having a cap is that we know a lot of families at the moment are efefctviely trapped by work not paying. So in a situation where if you can gain more in benefit than you can in work, it can be very difficult to make that decision to go back to work.

"But if you are asking me if I am worried about the level that the cap is set at, yes I am extremely worried." She added: "We need to get the detail right."

A row has been brewing about the cap since a leaked letter to The Observer revealed Communities Secretary Eric Pickles' fears that it could make 20,000 people homeless, along with 20,000 additional homelessness cases caused by other cuts to housing benefit.

Ministers have since denied that the concerns aired in the letter still stand.

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