date: 20 March 2013
embargo: For immediate release
Responding to the Chancellor's Budget today (Wednesday), TUC General Secretary Frances O'Grady said:
'This budget is the wrong answer to the wrong question. We face a jobs, growth and living standards crisis, yet today's proposals are small beer that do little more than tinker at the edges.
'The only long-term way to mend the public finances is to get a healthy growing economy where businesses and workers earn enough to spend confidently, and those who can afford it pay proper rates of tax.
'To boost growth the Chancellor should use current low interest rates to borrow for investment in infrastructure and a big programme of house-building. He should stop holding back the living standards of those most likely to spend, and stop cuts that suck growth out of the economy.
'And while moving pensions and benefits into annual managed expenditure is technical jargon, it raises the possibility of further significant cuts in payments if spending exceeds the limit set by the Chancellor in his spending review.
'No politician likes to be accused of a u-turn, but when your policies are making the problem worse then it is time to find reverse gear.'
NOTES TO EDITORS:
- Further TUC reaction to the Budget is available at www.touchstoneblog.org.uk
- All TUC press releases can be found at www.tuc.org.uk
- Follow the TUC on Twitter: @tucnews
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Issued: 20 March, 2013