Willott to Quiz Ombudsman over Flawed Tax Credits System

October 17, 2007 12:00 AM

Tomorrow, Jenny Willott MP and member of the Commons' Public Administration Committee, will quiz the Parliamentary Ombudsman following her scathing report into the Tax Credits System - Tax Credits: Getting it Wrong.

Commenting in advance, Jenny said:

"The Ombudsman was right to question whether the system of clawing back overpayments from those on the lowest incomes, even when they are a result of official error, is the best way of ensuring proper support for this group.

"Thousands of the poorest and most vulnerable people in Wales are still being terribly treated as a result of Gordon Brown's flawed tax credits system.

"The key challenge for the Government in terms of tackling poverty and narrowing the gap between rich and poor is breaking the cycle of deprivation.

"But because recipients of tax credits can be forced to pay back tax credits if their income suddenly improves, perhaps if they secure a job, these people can suddenly find themselves owing hundreds of pounds pulling them back into debt and back into poverty.

"While some improvements have been made, the system is still failing far too many of Wales' poorest. The question is, will tax credits ever be able to provide an appropriate form of support for those on the lowest incomes so they can break out of the poverty trap, or is the system fundamentally flawed?"

What would you like to do next?