2:59 am, Mon 08 Apr 2013
A petition signed by 450,000 people calling for Work and Pensions Secretary
Iain Duncan Smith to live off £53 a week will be delivered to his office today.
Protesters are angry at sweeping welfare reforms and the Cabinet minister's claim he could live off the amount if he had to.
Work and Pensions Secretary Iain Duncan Smith
Credit: Ian Nicholson/PA Wire
Musician and part-time shop worker Dominic Aversano, from Twickenham, near London, started the petition, which Mr Duncan Smith has dismissed as "a complete stunt".
Mr Aversano, 28, said: "[The petition] has sent a powerful message to this Government, showing the level of opposition to their vicious welfare cuts."
2:37 pm, Tue 02 Apr 2013
On Sunday, the Work and Pensions Secretary Iain Duncan Smith said if he "had to" he could live on £53 a week, as one benefit recipient argued they were having to, in a BBC interview.
Chancellor gave a speech on welfare, ITV News' Political Correspondent Libby Weiner asked him if he could live on £53 pounds a week.
George Osborne replied: "I don't think it's sensible to reduce this debate to an argument about individual's set of circumstances, and the example that was given on the BBC radio".
1:01 pm, Tue 02 Apr 2013
online petition calling on Iain Duncan Smith to demonstrate he can live on £53 per week has attracted more than 180,000 signatures.
Yesterday, the Work and Pensions Secretary told BBC Radio 4's Today programme he could live on this amount if he "had to".
The petition calls on Iain Duncan Smith to live on this budget for at least one year.
According the change.org petition, "this would a 97% reduction in his current income, which is £1,581.02 a week or £225 a day after tax".
6:03 am, Tue 02 Apr 2013
has said the coalition's changes to benefits are about "fairness". Iain Duncan Smith
But the Work and Pensions Secretary was facing a backlash today after suggesting that he could get by on £53 a week, as one benefit recipient argued they were having to, rather than his current after-tax income of £1,600 a week.
Work and Pensions Secretary Iain Duncan Smith.
Credit: Press Association
"If I had to I would," Mr Duncan Smith told BBC Radio 4's Today programme.
In the wake of the comment, more than 100,000 people have signed a petition on the
, calling for the minister to try surviving on that money for a year. change.org website