Peterborough council leader responds to criticism over comments about family budgets and the number of children couples have

The leader of Peterborough City Council has come under fire after comments he made about family budgets and the number of children couples have.

By Stephen Briggs
Tuesday, 5th October 2021, 4:30 pm
Council leader Wayne Fitzgerald
Council leader Wayne Fitzgerald

Cllr Wayne Fitzgerald made the comments in an interview with the BBC surrounding the cuts to Universal Credit, where he said ‘families should take responsibility for themselves’ over budgets.

In the interview he said; “Finances for many are critical. There are other ways that you can go generate money for your family.

“I would be one of the first to say here that families should take responsibility for themselves, the way they live their lives, how many children they have, what they do with their cash, what jobs they have.”

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The comments - especially around the number of children families have - have come under fire this week.

One twitter user wrote: “...consider how many children they have”. What is he expecting people to do? Get rid of a couple?” while another said: “Just awful and not surprising. Also, “what jobs they have’ is an insult to so many who are sometimes working more than one job to keep their heads above water.”

On person said: “what about after the children are born @Cllrfitzgerald? No heating this month Jonny, have you tried not being born into a family that experienced a rapid downturn in finances due to the pandemic?”

Speaking to the Peterborough Telegraph, cllr Fitzgerald said: “Like all these things people have varying opinions about the benefits and welfare system. Most Conservative supporters would agree with me.

“I’ve had lots of people agreeing with me. Those that don’t are entitled to their opinion.”