£3,000: the annual bill working Britons pay for Britain's lavish benefits system

Up by $200 under the Labour party governmernt

Labour's lavish benefits system has burdened working families with an average bill of £3,000 a year, figures revealed yesterday. Tory analysis of official statistics revealed that the average working family contributes an extra £200 a year towards the welfare system in real terms following changes made by Labour.

The Tories last night said the figures underlined the need to reform Britain’s bloated benefits system to reduce the pressure on taxpayers who have to fund it.

Conservative MP Gavin Barwell said: ‘The benefits bill rocketed under Labour. That’s why we will cut the ballooning welfare budget and make work pay through a radical new Universal Credit. ‘Ed Miliband and Labour’s opposition to our reforms, which will make work pay, show he is not on the side of fairness or hard-working families.’

Figures published by the Department for Work and Pensions show that the real terms cost of working age benefits, such as Incapacity Benefit and Jobseeker’s Allowance, rose by £3.2billion under Labour, hitting £48.2billion last year.

The increase left the 16.5million working households paying almost £200 a year extra to support those on benefits. The total cost of working age benefits is equivalent to £2,920 a year for every working household. The figures also reveal that the number of workless households increased under Labour from 3.7million to 3.9million.

Ministers are planning a range of new measures to help people on benefits to get back into work. They are also planning a £25,000 annual cap on the amount of benefits an individual household can receive. The figures do not include the cost of pensions or locally administered benefits such as housing benefit.


Note: One pound in Britain buys about the same as one dollar in Australia

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