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Welfare Reform must continue says Bishop of Ripon and Leeds

Posted on: January 28, 2014 1:05 PM
Retiired Bishop of Ripon & Leeds John Packer
Photo Credit: BBC News

The Bishop of Ripon & Leeds John Packer who retired from the House of Lords on Friday says in a Church of England interview published today that campaigning on Welfare Reform must continue.

Reflecting on his seven years serving in the Lords, he said it had been 'a real privilege' to be part of the Lords, but says he doesn't think the welfare system has improved during his time.

The Bishop, who retired from his diocese earlier this month, has been a staunch campaigner on welfare reform, child benefit and other areas through his work in the Lords, and in the interview says he believes

‘that many of those reforms such as the bedroom tax are unfair … and people are suffering as a result.’ He says ‘People are being driven into debt by having to pay council tax in situations where they cannot afford to do so. There are going to be very considerable pressures on people as a result of welfare reforms.’ He goes on to say that the benefits system did need to be overhauled as it was too difficult to understand.

The Bishop and his wife are retiring to the north east, and he says he says he's looking forward to what the future brings and being able to attend church 'as a Christian rather than in order to take services'.



Jillian Moody 070 898 1463 [email protected]

The full interview can be heard at: