Responding to the Chancellor’s recent announcement in his Summer Budget, Imran has condemned the Budget as nothing more than ‘smoke and mirrors’ concealing the true extent to which it will hit working people.
Following his last budget just several months ago before the election, on Wednesday, the Chancellor of the Exchequer, George Osborne unveiled his Summer Budget which included a raft of measures.
Most notable was the introduction of a ‘national living wage’ intended to soften the blow of cutting tax credits which boosted the pay packets of workers on low wages, a measure implemented by the last Labour Government. However many experts have since said that this is not representative of the true living wage as it will be calculated at a different rate and currently stands at a rate that was designed to take the inclusion of tax credits into account.
Furthermore, despite increasing student tuition fees to £9,000, the Chancellor continues to add to the financial burden of aspirational students attending university by removing the system of student grants which aided poorer students through helping to pay for food and cover their rent. These grants will be replaced by higher student loans which will have to be paid back once graduates are earning over a certain threshold, and it is expected that many will be further deterred by these announcements.
Speaking on the Budget, Imran said:
“Although the Government has granted a rise in the minimum wage, this is still a budget by the rich and for the rich using smoke and mirrors to give the impression it will help working people, whilst instead cutting tax credits that benefit thousands of families in Bradford by keeping them out of poverty. This is a budget that will hit them the hardest.
“Furthermore, the rise in the minimum wage branded by the Chancellor as a ‘living wage’ is no such thing as the true living wage is set at a rate which takes tax credits into account, and so with the cut to tax credits it will not be the pay rise that many people in Bradford and across the UK expect and deserve.
“Students aspiring to attend university and better themselves will also be hit by this cruel Government who have scrapped student grants and replaced them with expensive loans, adding to the already colossal loans which they will have to pay back and burdening them throughout their working lives.”
“Ultimately, it is not the budget that the poorest and working people need, it is not the budget that the UK needs and it is not the budget that Bradford needs.”