Thewliss demands new Work & Pensions Secretary scraps rape clause

As Stephen Crabb starts his new job as Work & Pensions Secretary today, SNP MP Alison Thewliss is calling upon him to make it an “urgent priority to unequivocally scrap the tax credits rape clause”.

Stephen Crabb takes over as Secretary of State for Work & Pensions following the dramatic resignation of Iain Duncan Smith MP at the weekend.

Ms Thewliss said a change in leadership at the DWP was the ideal opportunity for the Government to review its policy agenda and scrap the two child policy and the rape clause with immediate effect.

Commenting, Alison Thewliss MP said:

Since July 2015, the UK Government has stuck rigidly to its pernicious policy agenda which will seek to limit tax credits to just two children per family. They have been unable to explain how this will work, or how it fits with equalities legislation and the “family test”. Also contained within last year’s budget is an appalling statement which suggests that women whose third child, born as a result of rape, would have to justify this to DWP staff in order to receive benefits. That’s simply not on.

“Before Iain Duncan Smith suddenly found his moral compass and resigned, he seemed to think that this was a perfectly sensible policy; however it’s one which causes serious concern amongst women’s welfare and rape crisis charities.

“As Stephen Crabb gets his feet under the desk at Caxton House today, I believe he needs to give urgent priority to this issue and unequivocally scrap the tax credits rape clause”.