Today Chancellor Rishi Sunak will deliver his first Budget.
It’s a tough brief for the new man in 11 Downing Street in the face of the Coronavirus outbreak, record flooding, sustained weak economic growth and pressure for greater public spending to fix our broken public services.
Last Sunday, the TUC published its Budget submission to the Treasury setting out what we think the Budget should include to help working people get back on their feet.
We’ve had a decade of devastation because of government cuts to essential services. These cuts have not only pushed services to the brink, but have crushed economic growth and caused the worst pay crisis for two centuries. The damage needs to be undone urgently.
So we’re calling on the Chancellor to make the 2020s a decade of renewal – with green infrastructure, rebuilding of public services, and support for better quality jobs.
On top of this, we’re calling on the government to do something for the almost 2 million low-paid workers who don’t earn enough to qualify for Statutory Sick Pay.
No one should be out of pocket for doing the right thing by following the government’s advice to self-isolate to stop the spread of the virus.
That’s why we’re calling for #SickPayForAll from day one – for every worker in the UK.
We’ve set the government four challenges to turn around Britain’s weak and austerity-damaged economy. Each challenge comes with its own tests for this Budget.
1. Prepare the country for a just transition to a low carbon economy
2. Invest in communities as well as infrastructure
3. Decent jobs across the country
4. A strong economy with trade deals that protects jobs, rights and peace
The TUC is also calling on the Treasury to ensure the financing needed for an emergency support package for workers affected by coronavirus, including:
The Chancellor’s first budget must set out the roadmap for renewal in the 2020s.
Britain needs major public investment to revive communities, raise wages and kickstart the transition to a net-zero economy.
And alongside this we need a credible plan to deliver better jobs and higher living standards.
We will be watching to see if the reality matches the rhetoric.
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