The Government announcement was made over the weekend just hours after hundreds of thousands marched in anti-austerity protests around the country.
Chancellor, George Osborne has also dismissed reports that welfare cuts could be delayed or scaled back, saying details will be in next month’s budget.
The Department for Work and Pensions has come under pressure recently to reveal figures detailing how many people have died after having their benefits sanctioned.
However, despite the concerns of many, in a joint article written in the Sunday Times, Osborne and Iain Duncan Smith, the work and pensions secretary have said that the benefit cuts will go ahead.
“This government was elected with a mandate to implement further savings from the £220bn welfare budget,” the ministers said. “For a start, we will reduce the benefit cap, and have made clear that we believe we need to make significant savings from other working-age benefits.
“We will set out in detail all the steps we will take to bring about savings totalling £12bn a year in next month’s budget and at the spending review in the autumn.
“It took many years for welfare spending to spiral so far out of control, and it’s a project of a decade or more to return the system to sanity. Reforming the damaging culture of welfare dependency and ensuring that work pays has been central to our mission to make Britain fit for the future.”
The Guardian reports:
During the election campaign, Osborne and David Cameron repeatedly refused to outline exactly how they would reach the £12bn figure, apart from saying they would reduce the benefit cap, freeze most working-age benefits for two years and take away housing benefit for under-25s.
Cameron has ruled out touching benefits for elderly people and child benefit, meaning the bulk of the savings will have to come from other working-age welfare payments. The most likely cuts are restrictions on child tax credits and housing benefit.
Details of the cuts have now been agreed between Osborne and Duncan Smith, who is said to have been concerned to make sure the changes are designed to encourage people into work and are not just “salami slicing” the budget.
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