A Glasgow MP has called on the UK Government to suspend benefit sanctions during the coronavirus outbreak.

David Linden Glasgow East SNP MP said he was “alarmed” to hear sanctions were still being applied.

He has written to the Work and Pensions Secretary Therese Coffey asking for the policy to be reconsidered.

He said the Government has listened to many concerns in recent weeks about safeguarding income and hopes it can be applied to sanctions as well.

Mr Linden said: “I have written to the Government to call on them to urgently lift these sanctions, given the exceptional circumstances.

“The coronavirus affects us all and this is no time to punish or penalise those who are struggling to heat their homes and feed themselves.”

In the letter he states: “I hope you will be receptive to a request for a change in policy to help some of the most vulnerable in society.

"I would like to request that the Department urgently reviews its position, lifting all currently-applied sanctions.

"I appreciate this would mark a significant departure from policy, but consider this a necessary step to safeguard the wellbeing of the poorest in society in the most exceptional of circumstances.”