SDLP MLA for Mid Ulster, Patsy McGlone, has warned of the impact in Mid Ulster of proposed cuts to the welfare system.
The Mid Ulster MLA was speaking after appearing on the panel at the Northern Ireland Council for Voluntary Action (NICVA) Welfare Reform and the Economy conference.
Mr McGlone said: “The recent NICVA report on the Impact of Welfare Reform on Northern Ireland shows that, if the proposed cuts to the welfare system go ahead, the Cookstown and Magherafelt Council areas will see an estimated loss of £32million each year from the local economy.
“That figure represents the many individuals and families who will see a massive cut in the amount of benefits they are entitled to. Amongst those who will be affected are some of the most vulnerable in our society. They face cuts to incapacity benefit, tax credits, working age benefit, housing benefit and disability living allowance.
“These new estimates of the loss to the local economy demonstrate the knock-on effect of those cuts.
“The SDLP has led the opposition to the cuts ... we have succeeded in forcing a major rethink in the approach being taken by Sinn Féin and the DUP.
“But the Social Development Minister has yet to reveal what agreed cuts the DUP and Sinn Féin will try to force through the Assembly.”