Monday, 23 March 2015


The Tory plan has failed. This week’s Budget changed nothing for working people in Haslingden and Hyndburn

George Osborne told people they’ve never had it so good. But after five years working people are still an average £1,600 a year worse off.

The Tories promised they would protect our NHS and balance the books. But their plan has failed and I’m worried that the NHS as we know it won’t survive five more years of the Tories.

The Tory government started Budget day with plans for extreme spending cuts and they ended Budget day with plans for extreme spending cuts which go beyond simply balancing the books.

This would mean deep cuts to police, defence and social care which are almost impossible to achieve. That’s why I believe the Tory plans can only be achieved by putting the NHS at risk and raising VAT again.

That’s what you get from a Tory Chancellor who gives with one hand and takes away much more with the other.

Labour has a better plan for Britain's future; a plan that works for ordinary families, rewarding the hard work they do and saving the NHS they rely on. The next Labour Government will raise living standards by increasing the minimum wage, 25 hours of free childcare for working parents, and a freeze in energy bills until 2017 – alongside powers for the regulator to cut bills this winter.

We will give our NHS time to care, with 20,000 more nurses, 8,000 GPs and cancer tests guaranteed in one week, paid for by closing tax loopholes and a mansion tax on properties over £2 million.

We will cut business rates for small firms, reduce tuition fees to £6,000 a year and guarantee an apprenticeship for every school leaver who gets the grades. We will cut taxes for millions of working people through a lower 10p starting rate.

And we will balance the books in a fairer way by reversing the Tory tax cut for millionaires and scrapping the Bedroom Tax.

That’s the kind of plan we need. Not a Budget flop from a Chancellor whose plan is failing working families here in Haslingden and Hyndburn.