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Peter Grant MP for Glenrothes and Central Fife has condemned the Chancellor of the Exchequer for his comments about the extent of child poverty in the UK. This comes one week after figures released by the End Child Poverty coalition show that in one part of Mr Grant’s constituency 38% of children are living in poverty.

In a TV interview Mr Hammond had denied the findings of the UN Special Rapporteur’s report on poverty levels in the UK and said that he ‘rejects the idea that there are vast numbers of people facing dire poverty’.

Peter Grant MP commented:

“The UN Rapporteur’s report says that “changes to benefits, and sanctions against parents, have unintended consequences on children and are driving the increase in child poverty.” From the figures released last week, this is certainly what we’re seeing.

“It is utterly shameful for the Chancellor – the person who is ultimately responsible for how much the UK Government spends and where – to dismiss the serious issue of child poverty. For the 6th biggest economy in the world to allow 38% of children in part of my constituency to suffer from the trauma of poverty is cruel and negligent.

“Every week my constituency office gets fresh appeals for help by people who literally don’t have enough money to live on. The record numbers of people now relying on foodbanks should have been enough evidence for the Chancellor to know that poverty is a fact of life for far too many people.

“Mr Hammond’s crass and insensitive remarks may have been welcomed by the hardline right wingers he needs to win over in his quest to become Tory party leader but he has shown how out of touch he and his government are with the reality of poverty in many parts of the UK.”

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