Welfare cuts will hit millions, warn union leaders

'Some households could lose up to £2,000 a year'

Poor families would lose most from deeper cuts to the welfare budget if the Chancellor announces fresh austerity measures in the Autumn Statement, union leaders have warned.

A new study for the TUC showed that some households, including those where people are in work, could lose up to £2,000 a year.

Low income households could lose £700 a year, eight times more than the richest, said the TUC.

Fresh cuts to the welfare budget would not help anyone into work, but will make millions of people poorer, claimed the union organisation.

TUC General Secretary Brendan Barber said: "Two years of economic stagnation have left the Chancellor's austerity plan well off-track.

"Deep spending cuts have killed off the recovery and risk causing permanent economic damage.

"Faced with this bleak economic outlook, it would be completely wrong for the Chancellor to lash out at families by slashing vital benefits even more.

"Families are already reeling from reductions in working tax credits and child benefit, and a fresh welfare raid will put an ever greater strain on their finances."