‘Benefit mitigations must continue’ – Maskey
Sinn Féin MLA Alex Maskey has reiterated a call for the mitigation package topping up benefit payments to continue beyond the planned end date next year.
The party's Welfare spokesperson was commenting after Professor Eileen Evason - who designed the package - warned about the consequences of ending it.
Alex Maskey said: "With the ongoing Tory attacks on the welfare system and those most in need, it is vital that funding to offset the Tory cuts continues.
"Funding for the mitigation package which was secured as part of the Fresh Start Agreement has helped alleviate the hardship caused by Tory cuts for many.
"The funding for that mitigation package is due to come to an end in March 2020 and Sinn Féin has been clear that mitigation measures must continue past that deadline.
"Just this week we had the warning from Professor Eileen Evason, who chaired the panel which designed these mitigations, who said the most vulnerable are facing a toxic combination of the end of the top-ups and the roll out of Universal Credit by the British Government.
“We will continue to seek agreement with other parties to ensure funding for mitigations continues from March 2020.”