Natalie Don MSP has condemned the impact of a benefit cap in Renfrewshire after the release of new figures which revealed the number of people affected.

The latest numbers from the Department of Work and Pensions showed that 528 households in Renfrewshire were subject to the benefit cap from its introduction until the latest figures as of February 2022.

Natalie Don MSP said: “Ever since its introduction in 2013 this callous policy has done nothing but punish the most vulnerable and severely limit their ability to provide for themselves and their families, and now couldn’t be a worse time for its effects to be felt and its limitations imposed on more households.

“528 households in Renfrewshire have been impacted since the introduction of the Tory benefit cap.

“As a Tory-made cost of living crisis ravages households across the country, it is important we look at ways of supporting people financially, not constructing more barriers and taking money out of their pockets – it’s long past time this disgraceful policy went.”

She added: “In Scotland, the Scottish Government is taking the steps it can to help families affected by these policies, but it shouldn’t have to mitigate damaging Tory austerity, nor should its efforts in tackling poverty be dragged backwards.

“With the full powers of independence, the Scottish Government can get on with the work of supporting Scottish people through tough times without the need to continually clean up after the Tories and their dangerous pursuit of an ideology-driven austerity agenda.

“Time and time again, amidst pandemics and crises, we’ve seen the Tories turn their backs on the most vulnerable people by refusing to reverse this policy – making it clear that only with independence can Scots be free of the worst of Tory rule.”