A UK benefits cap that has just come into force is "indefensible", church leaders in Scotland have said. The Church of Scotland, the Baptist Union, the Methodist Church and the United Reformed Church said the cap would hit children the hardest. The churches believe the number of Scottish families with capped benefits will increase by more than 10 times. The churches said the cuts were "manifestly unfair".
Rev Dr Richard Frazer, convener of the Church of Scotland's Church and Society Council, described the cap as punishment for hundreds of children and said those who carried the heaviest burden were the "least able to suffer it". He explained, "We cannot tackle poverty by making people poorer and we cannot leave families without enough to meet their basic needs."
Paul Morrison, policy officer for the Methodist Church, said: "Over 2,000 single parents with babies under a year of age had their housing benefit cut because of the cap each month. Does the government seriously expect that cutting housing benefit will make it easier for them to find work?"