Child poverty could rise to a disgraceful 60 year high should Boris Johnson win the upcoming general election a new report by the Resolution Foundation says.
Warning that the new and much criticised Conservative Party manifesto still retains the former Tory and Liberal Democrat benefit cuts, the think tank has predicted that the number of British children living in poverty will rise to an astonishing 34.5% in 2023-24, up from an already shameful 29.6% in 2017-18.
The Labour Party has committed 28 times the amount of public spending as the Tories should they win the coming election, with £9bn set aside for social security. Policy changes since the last Labour government have seen social security spending being £34bn lower than would have otherwise been the case under a continual Labour government.
Despite the enormous cuts under austerity, the British economy has nothing to show for the hardship. Public services such as the NHS and police are now at breaking point and the national debt has risen to 85.9% of GDP compared to 74.6% of GDP in 2010, the Tories fluttering away the coffers on enriching the rich, Brexit and international belligerence.
The Labour Party has committed to ending austerity and child poverty, stopping the Tories’ two-child limit for benefits, alongside scrapping the bedroom tax, the benefit cap and universal credit.
John McDonnell, Labour’s Shadow Chancellor, expanded on the plans for Labour’s fair society for all:
“We will poverty-proof schools, introducing Free School Meals for all primary school children and tackling the cost of school uniforms. We will massively expand free childcare and open 1,000 new Sure Start centres. We will tackle the crisis of low pay by introducing a Real Living Wage of £10 an hour and giving public sector workers a five per cent pay rise, abolishing in-work poverty within a parliament. We will also guarantee a Right to Food to end the scandal of children and their families relying on food banks. We will ensure workers have full rights from day one and ban zero-hours contracts. We will build a million homes over a decade to tackle the housing crisis and rebuild our NHS after a decade of Tory neglect.”John McDonnell
Labour’s plan to end the scourge of poverty will come through increases in Corporation Tax, slight tax increases only for those earning over £80,000 a year and a clampdown on the institutionalised tax avoidance of individual billionaires and American corporate multinationals such as Amazon, Facebook and Starbucks.
Labour’s fiscal plans have been supported by 163 leading economists.
Writing in the Financial Times, the group insisted that the plans were essential to tackling Britain’s failing structure, including lost productivity growth, a lack of investment and the ever-growing disparity in wealth between the London area and the rest of the country.
“The choice at this election is clear: record child poverty under the Tories or – with Labour – the strongest and widest fight against the root causes of child poverty for a generation.”John McDonnell