New income rules hit poor families as they lose council discount card
Monday 22 October 2012
Tens of thousands of low-income households are set to lose special local authority discount cards which entitle them to cheaper museum entry, sports club membership and music lessons, the Volkskrant reports on Monday.
New income regulations mean 11,000 poor families in The Hague will no longer be entitled to the card, as will almost 12,000 in Utrecht and 1,750 in Zoetermeer, the paper says.
The cards used to be given to households with an income of up to 130% of the basic welfare benefit but that has now been cut to 110%. The cabinet hopes the measure will encourage more people to work.
‘Many children grow up in poverty,’ Inge Vianen of the left-wing green party GroenLinks in The Hague said. ‘The card helps everyone take part in sport and cultural activities. It is painful to take it away from so many people at a time of crisis.’