KATE OSBORNE: Only a Labour Government will fix the mess the Tories have made of our communities
This out-of-touch Conservative government have spent 13 years failing the majority in this country, keeping us in a vicious cycle of economic and political failures.
The Spring Budget promised more of the same. The people of this area need – and deserve - so much more than this. Families across the UK are struggling to find room left in their budgets to afford to eat, rent, heat, and childcare.
These costs have rocketed during the cost of living crisis, but these are issues that have been ongoing for years – and long before inflation reached its highest point in 40 years.
Small businesses were once again neglected in this Budget and The Chancellor’s false rhetoric on levelling up continues - it remains the case more still goes to London and the South East than the North will ever see. However, I do hope the promise of money for South Tyneside is actually delivered - we will see!
Under the Tories, pensioner poverty is on the rise, child poverty is up, fuel poverty is up and public services like our NHS, our schools, Local Government and so much more are on their knees - yet for workers real wages are down 3.5% and public sector pay has fallen 5%.
It is no wonder that so many people are saying enough is enough and real change is needed.
My office deals with hundreds of cases a month, all struggling to cope - particularly in housing - there are an estimated 1.2 million households on local waiting lists in England, which the government has once more failed to address in its budget. 16% of Jarrow constituents have missed rent payments in the last six months, and across England more than 270,000 people are homeless, including an appalling 123,000 children.
When will this Government prioritise those who need immediate support, instead of protecting the wealthiest from higher tax rates?
There are more than 3,000 UK warm banks, with 50% of councils in England and Wales involved in the setup and support of them. They come about following the government raising the energy price cap by 80% in October, putting the average UK energy bill up to £3,549 a year.
In Jarrow, 40% of constituents are unable to afford to turn the heating on. This comes as no surprise when electricity prices in the UK have risen by 66.7% and gas prices by 129% in the 12 months to January 2023.
Then why does the government continue to ignore this?
Poverty is a political choice. This Spring Budget has proved that the Tories will choose it time and time again. I will never stop speaking up about it on behalf of my constituents.
It’s abundantly clear we need a change of direction and only under a Labour Government will start to fix the mess the Tories have made of our communities such as ours.