Benefits should be brought in line with the rate of inflation, says Armstrong

Benefits should be brought in line with the rate of inflation, Alliance Communities spokesperson Kellie Armstrong has said.

Communities Kellie Armstrong Benefits

The Strangford MLA was speaking after the Consumer Price Index (CPI) rate of inflation was announced as 6.7 per cent for September, the same rate as August, meaning prices for good and services are still rising at the same rate as the previous month.


“The Government uses the September CPI rate of inflation to determine the percentage amount to increase benefits, state pension and other factors,” she said.


“Freezing benefits places more children into poverty. Therefore, the Government must update benefits in line with today’s announced CPI rate of 6.7 per cent. If they don’t, they will effectively be taking away money from the most vulnerable.


“The UK is moving from a cost of living crisis into a low income crisis, with the latest figures showing 12 per cent of people in Northern Ireland live in absolute poverty, meaning their household income is less than 60 per cent of the UK median, even before housing costs.


“There is no doubt the ongoing political impasse here is exacerbating this situation by not allowing MLAs to carry out work and put measures in place to help those who could benefit most from that help.”