News: Budget give-aways won’t help tackle poverty

Reacting to today’s Spring Budget, Peter Kelly, director of The Poverty Alliance, said: “People want a society based on justice and compassion, where everyone has a solid foundation to build a better life. This Budget doesn’t deliver that.

“National Insurance and Capital Gains Tax changes will give away huge amounts of money to the richest households, but are worth very little or nothing at all to the poorest households who are struggling to avoid destitution. These changes will increase unjust inequality, and the resulting cuts to public services will badly affect us all – but especially those who on the lowest incomes who rely on them most.

“The UK is one of the wealthiest countries in the world. Since the 1960s, our economy has trebled in size, but our political leaders are failing in their responsibility to use that massive wealth to invest in the public good. Poll after poll has found that people want our political leaders to repair the foundations of our society, and strengthen them for the future. Democracy and justice demand that politicians act now to support our critical social safety net.

“The Chancellor’s decision to extend the repayment period for budget advances under Universal Credit is welcome, giving households financial breathing space at a time when they are struggling to stay afloat as a result of deductions and debt.

“Continuing the Household Support Fund in England will result in extra money for the Scottish Government and our members will look forward to discussing with Ministers and local councils how we can best use that money to support people on the lowest incomes.”

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