ONE in seven working-age families in the Westmorland and Lonsdale constituency could lose out if benefits do not increase enough.

According to new analysis by the Joseph Rowntree Foundation, if the Government increases benefits at the same rate as wages, rather than inflation, one in seven families will see a real-terms cut. 

On October 31, former Chancellor Kwasi Kwarteng was to set out a plan to fund the tax cuts announced in his controversial September mini-budget. However, this is now up to his successor. 

The plan will include a decision on whether benefits will be increased by the same rate as wages – which at the current rate of 5.4 per cent would amount to a real-terms cut – or prices, which soared almost 10 per cent in the year to August.

An estimated 15 per cent of working-age families receiving means-tested support in Westmorland and Lonsdale – 4,594 households – will be impacted if benefits were only to rise in line with wages.