Team Glasgow rail against “decade of austerity” Budget

Glasgow’s team of SNP MPs have today (Wednesday 16th March) railed against Chancellor George Osborne’s budget, which they say will “condemn the city to a decade of austerity”.

Team Glasgow highlighted a number of cruel policy announcements in Osborne’s budget which will have a detrimental impact on Glaswegians.

Glasgow Central MP, Alison Thewliss, said:

“This is a bad budget for Glasgow and reminds us that nothing and no-one is safe from the Tory axe. The SNP advocates a more balanced approach to the budget which would return the UK’s finances to a sustainable path whilst, crucially, still investing in public services. Today’s Tory cuts will only heap further unnecessary pressure on the public sector. The Chancellor has confirmed a decade of austerity. It is austerity through choice, not necessity.”

Glasgow North West MP, Carol Monaghan – a Physics Teacher at Hyndland Secondary School before becoming an MP – warned that the Chancellor’s budget is devastating for Glasgow’s young people. She said:

“In his 2015 Summer Budget, the Chancellor announced he would be slashing student maintenance grants for some of the poorest students, and converting them into loans. Today the Chancellor also scrapped automatic entitlement to housing benefit for unemployed 18-21 year olds, which the homeless charity Crisis condemned and said would result in an increase in homelessness.”

Chris Stephens, MP for Glasgow South West, said:

“The Tories have already cut Scotland’s budget by £2.4 billion and plan to make a further £1.3 billion of cuts by 2019/20. Welfare cuts in particular mean that 100,000 additional Scottish children will move into relative poverty by 2020. In announcing today’s budget, the Chancellor has just condemned this city and the rest of Scotland to a decade of austerity.”

Stewart McDonald, MP for Glasgow South, said:

“This harsh Tory budget means that the Scottish Government will see a real terms reduction of £1.5 billion in the funding for day to day public services over the next four years – that is bad news for public sector workers in Glasgow”.

Glasgow North East MP, Anne McLaughlin, said:

“The Chancellor is cutting benefits for the disabled, the sick and the vulnerable to fund a tax cut for high earners. Just last week, the DWP announced major changes to Personal Independence Payments. It is estimated that these changes will adversely impact 640,000 people, a large number of whom are Glaswegians. However, we know from today’s budget that this has allowed the Chancellor to give a tax cut to top earners and pull hundreds of thousands of people out of the higher rate of income tax.

“Put simply, the Chancellor is taking from the disabled to give to his pals in the city of London. The only people who are “better together” are the Chancellor’s cronies because it certainly doesn’t feel like we’re better together for my constituents.”

Patrick Grady, SNP MP, for Glasgow North, concluded by saying the only way to firmly reject Tory austerity was to send a clear message at May’s Holyrood election by using both votes for the SNP. He said: “Today’s Tory budget reminds us why – now more than ever – we need a strong SNP Scottish Government to stand up to Westminster.

“The best way to send a clear message to the Tories that we won’t take another decade of austerity is to vote SNP. Whether you live in Summerston, Shettleston or Shawlands, it’s got to be both votes SNP in May.”

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