People on benefits have described feeling like “the walking dead” as they voiced fears that Jeremy Hunt’s expected announcement of a pay increase in line with rising prices will come too late.

The Chancellor’s autumn statement will be unveiled on today (November 17) after further rises in gas and electricity bills sent UK inflation to its highest level for 41 years, according to official figures.

Phoenix, a mother-of-four from Crystal Palace, south-east London, relies on Universal Credit to provide for her children, who are between four and 15.

“I think it’s too late,” the 33-year-old, who did not wish to give her surname, told the PA news agency.

“None of the people have hope. We are like the actual walking dead… so many people (are) saying the same thing.

“The struggle is real but should we really be in this turmoil?”

Phoenix said she does not expect the announcement to make a real impact and her expectations of significant help from the Government are low.

“All the important things we need to survive are slowly being taken away,” she said.

“As far as I’m concerned, we aren’t living.

“I don’t expect anything from these politicians as it’s because of all their decisions so far we are in this mess.

“An increase to the benefits will just about cover the cost of the rise, so really and truly it’s not worth it… we have families working double jobs who are still not able to provide.”

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