Hammond accused of producing a Budget which widens the gender gap as research suggests 90% of cuts since 2010 have fallen on women’s shoulders
- Chancellor Philip Hammond yesterday announce £100billion spending spree
- But Labour MP Yvette Cooper said income tax cuts will benefit men over women
- She highlighted study suggesting nearly 90% cuts since 2010 hit women harder
Philip Hammond was today accused of producing a Budget which widens the gender gap, hitting women hardest with cuts.
Research produced by the Commons Library suggests that 87 per cent of the cuts imposed since 2010 have hit women hardest.
The Chancellor yesterday announced an end to austerity as he went on a £100 billion spending spree – and brought forward a planned income tax cut.
But as Mr Hammond hailed plans as a boost for the ‘strivers and the grafters’ who are the backbone of Britain, Labour MP Yvette Cooper accused him of deepening inequalities.
She said: ‘The gender gap in the Tories tax and benefit policies is getting worse. After 8 years of Tory austerity, women are now bearing nearly 90 per cent of the losses from the changes to tax and benefit since 2010.
‘Each time the Chancellor has the chance to narrow the gap he does the opposite.’
Labour MP Yvette Cooper (file photo)lashed Philip Hammond’s Budget saying that he has deepened gender inequality in the UK
Philip Hammond posed with the famous red box outside No11 Downing Street yesterday before delivering his Budget speech. He said his Budget was a boost for Britain’s ‘strivers and grafters’
She added: ‘By choosing to put more into raising tax allowances including for the highest earners than into tackling the problems with Universal Credit, the Chancellor has ignored the fact that low earners are still being hardest hit, and that means women are still losing out.
‘Women are more likely to be hit by welfare cuts including Universal Credit whilst men are more likely to gain from the increased tax allowances.
‘The Chancellor’s decision to cut taxes for those on £100,000 a year helps more men, when he could have done more to sort out the problems with Universal Credit and the welfare system for families in poverty instead.
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‘In the centenary year of the first women getting the vote, it is shocking that the Treasury still refuses to carry out its own gender audit of the impact of its policies’.
Ms Cooper pointed to research by the Commons Library which suggests 87 per cent of the cuts since 2010 has fallen hardest on women’s shoulders.
Mr Hammond announced yesterday that billions of pounds will be pumped into the NHS, social care, mental health and defence.
And he revealed that from next April people would be able earn £12,500 a year tax-free and will not pay 40 per cent tax until they earn more than £50,000.
Those earning £12,500 will save £130 a year compared to their current income tax bill thanks to the rise in the personal allowance.
The Chancellor (pictured in the Commons yesterday) said he was safeguarding ‘Britain’s future’ and will pump more money into the NHS, social care, mental health and the armed forces
The House of Commons was packed to the rafters to hear the Chancellor deliver his pre-Brexit Budget yesterday afternoon
A far bigger saving will arrive for those earning £50,000, who will keep an extra £860 compared to their current income tax bill.
While the troubled Universal Credit benefits reforms will be bailed out with another £1billion of ‘transitional’ protections and £1.7billion in improved work allowances – effectively reversing cuts previously imposed by George Osborne.
Increases to tax thresholds will be raised faster than previously promised – saving around 32 million workers up to £860 a year each.
Mr Hammond said the giveaways were possible due to the ‘tough decisions’ the government had made over the past eight years – which had brought better growth forecasts and lower borrowing.
‘Their hard work is finally paying off and the era of austerity is finally coming to an end,’ he insisted.
But the Chancellor appears to have all-but abandoned his goal of getting the public finances into the black by 2025, in favour of turning on the spending taps.
A Treasury spokesperson said: ‘We have a strong record of supporting women: there is a near record number of women in work and the gender pay gap is at an all-time low.
‘Women will benefit from this Budget in many ways including the increase in the National Living Wage and the tax cuts for 32 million people.’
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