Yesterday, the Chancellor, Philip Hammond published the Autumn Budget which pledged to end austerity but failed to provide sufficient funding for the NHS, policing social care and education. The statement was made against the backdrop of Brexit weakening the overall economic outlook for the UK and the growing possibility the UK leaving the EU without a deal.
This budget will push our public services into crisis:
- There were no new funding commitments for regular policing even though 21,000 police have been cut and violent crime is on the rise. In London, this has led to the loss of a third of police staff posts, as well as two-thirds of police community support officer (PSCO) posts. In Tower Hamlets the number of PCSOs has reduced by 78% over the last 8 years.
- The one-off payment of an extra £400 million to schools will have little impact, considering the £1.7 billion cut in real terms from annual school spending since 2015. In Tower Hamlets schools still, face some £16 million of Government cuts.
- The money promised for Universal Credit is less than a third of the £7bn of social security cuts still to come and failed to re-consider the cruel two-child limit policy, which will ultimately lead to a sharp rise in poverty for millions of children across the UK.
- At a time of continued pressures on food banks and rising homelessness and poverty, the Government has given a £1.8 billion tax break to the top 10% of earners.
Rushanara Ali MP said:
“The Chancellor boasted that the “era of austerity is finally coming to an end”, however for many people in my constituency and across the UK this could not be further from the truth. Whatever funding has been promised by the Chancellor is too little too late, to repair the damage to schools, the police and local councils.”