The Member of Parliament for Stockton North, Alex Cunningham, today slammed the “downgraded” Government in light of its continuing economic failure, our downgraded credit rating, and all as long-term unemployment in areas like Stockton is going through the roof.
As the Chancellor delivered a Budget which downgraded growth forecasts once again, his Government was criticised for relying on a ‘failed economic policy’ which ‘actively chokes off growth’. Growth was downgraded yet again to a measly 0.6%, down from the 1.2% for 2013, while wages stagnate and living standards continue to fall.
“For three years, year on year the Chancellor has said the pain of the cuts hitting hard working families would last four years before he stabilised our economy to deliver growth and jobs. Today he said there will still be four years of his disastrous “Plan A” which is tearing the heart out of the economy and punishing ordinary hard working families with little prospect of things improving.
“He may have recast his failed plans to build houses, cut some taxes for business and cut the price of a pint of beer but I cannot see how that will address the huge increase in long term unemployment across the North East, and Stockton-on-Tees in particular where it has increased by 60% over the last year to 2,430 people. The total number unemployed is 7,370.
“Families are really hurting with the rising cost of food and other essentials, and even the small tax cuts the Chancellor announced today will go nowhere to meet those rising costs. We needed a budget for growth and jobs – instead we get a tax cut for millionaires which is three times the average wage in my constituency.”