This budget, occurring in the context of 10 years of weak growth, austerity and cuts – does not deliver what is needed for people in Dartford.
Despite what the Chancellor might believe he has not delivered Keynesian investment – but rather a few sticking plasters after a decade of austerity and under-investment.
Injustice in our welfare system, funding shortages for social care and in-work poverty are still unsolved.
🤝 Social Care
We are disappointed the Chancellor has made no extra provision for social care. With ten years in office, it is about time the government started taking action on this issue which impacts on so many.
We are particularly concerned about this re corona virus as carers going in lots of houses with vulnerable people.
Whilst cuts to business rates will aid small businesses we are concerned about the impact to councils as business rates are now one of the main sources of council funding, so any cut to rates is going to cut income. We did not hear from the Chancellor of any measure to compensate local government so this is essentially a significant cut to local government finances
The central grant councils receive from government has been cut by £1 billion this year.
♀️ Tampon Tax and Women
We welcome this being abolished. Women in Dartford Labour have campaigned for this for years.
The Chancellor stated ‘Women’s employment is at a record high’ as a cause of celebration. This fails to acknowledge the increases in precarious work and in-work poverty. Also there was no acknowledgement or help for the numerous women dealing with ongoing responsibility for the double burden of care work and paid employment. There was, once again, nothing on childcare at all.
🌳 Climate Emergency
We remember this was – under Sajid Javid – going to be the greenest budget ever. We were hopeful about this but it seems this has been forgotten. Where are the measures to reduce carbon in homes? The net zero target was put off until the Autumn. We simply cannot keep pushing dealing with the climate emergency into the future – action is needed now.
💷 Universal Credit and Poverty
The budget does nothing for the 25% of Dartford’s children who are growing up in poverty – many of whom have parents in work.
The lack of changes to universal Credit is disappointing and demonstrates a failure to listen to all the organisations who have reported on the devastating consequences of UC.
Whilst the cut in interest rates for social housing is welcome it does not go far enough. We need significant investment in social housing. We had hoped the Chancellor might listen to the 27 Conservative MPs who yesterday wrote to him asking him to allocate more funds to social housing.