Disability benefit cuts again defeated by House of Lords

Posted On: 
1st March 2016

The House of Lords has for a second time defeated the Government over plans to cut some disability benefits by £30 a week.

In January peers voted to remove the cuts to Employment and Support Allowance from the Welfare Reform and Work Bill, but MPs in the Commons reinstated the measure.

Yesterday peers voted 286 to 219 to delay the cuts at least until an assessment has been made of the impact on claimants.

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A spokesperson for the Department for Work and Pensions said: "The vote in the House of Lords is a routine part of the legislative process and next steps will be announced in due course."

Ministers may attempt to overturn the defeat in what is known as “parliamentary ping-pong,” where the contents of a bill is hammered out between the two Houses.

The Government had proposed reducing ESA payments to those judged unfit to work but well enough to attend interviews aimed at getting them back into the jobs market.

Ministers had argued that the cuts, which are due to come in next year, would provide an incentive for recipients to go back to work.