Green Party leader Caroline Lucas MP has called George Osborne’s comprehensive spending review a “budget to destroy a million jobs” – and has again argued that the worst cuts could have been avoided by an alternative policy based on a fairer tax regime.
Caroline Lucas said immediately after the budget statement:
“This is a budget to destroy half a million jobs in the public sector, according to the government’s own estimates. And the knock-on effects will be at least as many jobs lost in the private sector.”
The Brighton Pavilion MP added:
“When those public sector workers find themselves out of work they will, along with disabled people, feel the full force of the additional £7 billion worth of cuts in welfare spending, on top of the £11 billion of cuts announced in June. The housing benefit regime will become much more harsh, risking a rise in homelessness.
“They will also find that the loss of public services that this budget represents will massively disadvantage them, and all the most vulnerable people in society who rely on those services.”
“Where’s the fairness in a budget that lets vital public services go to the wall, hitting the poorest hardest?”
Britain’s first Green Party MP concluded:
“This was a budget of false economies, undermining the economy and hitting the most vulnerable – and all, incredibly, under the banner of fairness.”