Christian charities unimpressed by Autumn Statement

Thu 05 Dec 2013
By Sarah McAllister

The chancellor says "Britain's economic plan is working" but warns the job is "not yet done".

The Chancellor has delivered his Autumn Statement. George Osborne says "Britain's economic plan is working" but warns the job is "not yet done".

Among the measures announced is:

- The state pension age will rise to 68 in the mid-2030s

- A petrol tax rise of 2p a litre planned for next year is cancelled

- A married couples and civil partners tax break by April 2015

- Free school lunches from next September

- A removal of employers' National Insurance contributions for the under 21s

Liam Allmark is from Caritas Social Action Network - the social action wing of the Catholic Church. He told Premier's Marcus Jones on the News Hour he didn't see too many positives for the country's poorest.

The Children's Society also has reservations. Chief Executive, Matthew Reed said: "Measures in this year’s Autumn Statement hit low-income working families hard.

"Two-thirds of children in poverty are in working families, but by freezing the work allowance for Universal Credit over the next three years, the government is making it harder for families to make work pay."

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