Katrina, a mother of six in Wigan, used to have a job and deftly managed to support her family.
But when the coalition government cuts hit her workplace, she was thrown on the dole.
Life on benefits has been hard, but things are set to get a great deal harder.
The Tories are planning to trial their new universal credit benefit in Katrina’s town. They say it is a way to get poor people out of poverty. But the new benefit threatens to make 100,000 people worse off.
Katrina has been told that she will lose some of her housing and council tax benefits as a result. She doesn’t yet know how much, but any reduction will mean her family will suffer.
“Lots of people will end up with less,” she said. “What will happen then? How will people feed their children?”
The Tories paint jobless people, particularly those who have children, as irresponsible. But it’s the Tories who are throwing people out of work and leaving them in poverty.
Katrina had a job working for the Sure Start childcare project—before funding cuts made her redundant in September last year. She says it has been impossible to get back into work.
For Katrina, one of the most infuriating things is how the Tories are hurting the young. She said, “It’s not fair that children should be aware so early just how unfair society is.”