‘Higher prices here to stay’: Reactions to latest UK inflation figures

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Image of cash and pre-payment meter key

https://leftfootforward.org/2024/05/higher-prices-here-to-stay-reactions-to-latest-uk-inflation-figures/

‘’The cost of living crisis is not over – no matter how much ministers pretend it is’

UK inflation fell from 3.2% to 2.3% in April, its lowest level in three years – having hit its highest rate for 40 years of 11.1% in October 2022. Nonetheless Tory MPs are taking the opportunity to bask in the news as Rishi Sunak said “today marks a major moment for the economy, with inflation back to normal”.

However, for the millions affected by a continued cost-of-living crisis, it is not the time for Tory Ministers “to be popping champagne corks”, shadow Chancellor Rachel Reeves said, as many have been are quick to highlight the bigger picture on the state of the UK economy.

Shadow Chief Secretary to the Treasury Darren Jones MP pointed out that inflation is still higher than the Bank of England’s 2% target, as he slammed the Tories for “years of chaos” that “people have already paid the price” for, telling Conservatives to “get off the victory lap”. 

Trade union leaders have accused the Tories of presiding over the worst living standards for generations, as Paul Nowak, General Secretary of the Trades Union Congress (TUC) said the cost of living crisis “is not over – no matter how much ministers pretend it is.”

Soaring mortgage repayments and increased food and energy bills are still affecting many people, Nowak has stressed, in light of the recent inflation figures. 

Article continues at https://leftfootforward.org/2024/05/higher-prices-here-to-stay-reactions-to-latest-uk-inflation-figures/

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Voters support calls for two-child benefit limit to be scrapped

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https://leftfootforward.org/2024/05/voters-support-calls-for-two-child-benefit-limit-to-be-scrapped/

Image of Keir Starmer and a poor child.
Zionist Keir ‘Kid Starver’ Starmer. Image thanks to The Skwawkbox.

It comes amid calls from former Prime Minister Gordon Brown as well as the Archbishop of Canterbury, Justin Welby, to scrap the two-child benefit limit

A new poll shows that voters support calls to scrap the two-child benefit limit, a policy which charities and think tanks say has pushed hundreds of thousands of children into poverty.

The poll, carried out by Opinium, for Save the Children and shared exclusively with i, suggests that this would be a politically popular move for Labour, ‘with 39 per cent of the public claiming it would make them more likely to vote for whichever party made the pledge’.

It comes amid calls from former Prime Minister Gordon Brown as well as the Archbishop of Canterbury, Justin Welby, to scrap the two-child benefit limit, with the archbishop calling it a cruel and immoral policy that plunges hundreds of thousands of children into poverty.

The two-child benefit cap prevents parents from claiming child tax credit or universal credit for any third or subsequent child born after April 2017. It was introduced by the former chancellor George Osborne in his austerity drive with the aim of encouraging parents of larger families to find a job or work more hours.

https://leftfootforward.org/2024/05/voters-support-calls-for-two-child-benefit-limit-to-be-scrapped/

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Shocking poll shows the scale of children going hungry at school

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https://leftfootforward.org/2024/05/shocking-poll-shows-the-scale-of-children-going-hungry-at-school/

Shameful number of children getting to class too hungry to learn makes the case for universal free school meals

The ‘heartbreaking‘ rise of child poverty in the UK has been highlighted in a recent poll that revealed a shameful number of children going to school hungry in England. 

Four in ten teachers said their students were showing up to class too hungry to learn, which rose to 63% in the poorest areas, a new poll by Teacher Tapp reported by the Mirror, found. For more than a fifth of teachers, the issue had become worse since September. 

This has led to schools stepping in to address hunger where pupils don’t qualify for free school meals, with four in ten teachers saying their school is offering free school dinners to hungry children who don’t qualify. This rose to over half in the most deprived areas.  

The poll has emphasised the argument made by campaigners that free school meals should be extended to all primary school pupils, as strict eligibility criteria means many children living in poverty miss out. 

https://leftfootforward.org/2024/05/shocking-poll-shows-the-scale-of-children-going-hungry-at-school/

Continue ReadingShocking poll shows the scale of children going hungry at school

Food bank charity launches General Election Manifesto, setting out actions for the next government to eliminate poverty

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https://leftfootforward.org/2024/05/food-bank-charity-launches-general-election-manifesto-setting-out-actions-for-the-next-government-to-eliminate-poverty/

‘It is not right that anyone should need to use a food bank because they can’t afford to eat and pay bills. However, food bank need is at an historic high.’

On May 15, the Trussell Trust, the UK’s largest food bank charity and a leading voice on poverty and hunger, released its annual figures. In the last year, 3.1 million food parcels were distributed by their network, the most parcels the network has ever distributed in a single year. It is also a 94 percent increase in the total number of parcels distributed compared to five years ago.

Facing historic food bank need in 2024, the charity says this long-term pattern needs to change and is urging for urgent reform to Britain’s social security system. 

In its General Election Manifesto, the Trussell Trust is calling on all political parties to commit to building a future where no one needs a food bank to survive. The charity asks for an Essential Guarantee into Universal credit to be introduced, that would protect people from going without essentials, such as food and bills. They urge for debt deductions from social security payments to be more affordable, and for there to be a long-term strategy and funding for local crisis support.

https://leftfootforward.org/2024/05/food-bank-charity-launches-general-election-manifesto-setting-out-actions-for-the-next-government-to-eliminate-poverty/

Continue ReadingFood bank charity launches General Election Manifesto, setting out actions for the next government to eliminate poverty

Starmer offers baby steps to fix crisis

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https://morningstaronline.co.uk/article/starmer-offers-baby-steps-fix-crisis

Labour Party leader Keir Starmer speaks during his visit to the Backstage Centre, Purfleet, for the launch of Labour’s doorstep offer to voters ahead of the general election, May 16, 2024

On the economy, Labour offers only a commitment to “stability” based on austerity-style control of public spending and a hope that growth will nevertheless appear.

Establishing a publicly owned clean energy company, GB Energy, is all that remains of the radicalism of Sir Keir’s 10 pledges when seeking the Labour leadership.

Other ”first steps” include setting up a grandiose border security command to halt Channel boat crossings to outflank the Tories and a crackdown on “anti-social behaviour.”

Sir Keir told his audience that even these “first steps” could take two full terms in office — 10 years — to fully implement.

That makes their modesty still more striking. One pledge is to recruit 6,500 new teachers when 40,000 leave schools each year, equating to one-fifth of a new teacher each for Britain’s schools.

On the NHS, a first step commitment to provide 40,000 more appointments each week is equivalent to just a 2 per cent rise.

All this was welcomed by Lord Cameron’s friend, Boots chief executive Seb James, who particularly praised Labour’s “sensible fiscal measures.”

It was less welcome to Labour left organisation Momentum, which decried the party’s lack of radicalism.

A spokesman said: “These fixes fall desperately short of the bold policies needed to fix the Tories’ broken Britain.

https://morningstaronline.co.uk/article/starmer-offers-baby-steps-fix-crisis

Zionist Keir Starmer supports Israel's Gaza genocide.
Zionist Keir Starmer supports Israel’s Gaza genocide.

Continue ReadingStarmer offers baby steps to fix crisis