The SNP has said the Tories will leave millions of families “permanently worse off” unless the Chancellor reverses cuts to public sector pay and Universal Credit – as analysis from the Resolution Foundation finds average pay packets could be cut by £1,200 a year by 2025.
The Resolution Foundation warned “weaker pay growth and higher unemployment will serve to prolong Britain’s living standards squeeze”, which is on course to last for 15 years following the economic shocks of Brexit, Covid-19 and the financial crash.
The think-tank also warned the Chancellor’s plans to cut Universal Credit from April “will see around six million households losing over £1,000… just when unemployment is at its highest.”
It comes as a poll from YouGov suggests 61 per cent of Scots, and 54 per cent of people across Britain, think the Tory government is ‘wrong’ to freeze public sector pay (ex DKs).
Commenting, SNP Shadow Work and Pensions Secretary Neil Gray MP (pictured) said:
“The Chancellor must reverse his decision to slash pay for public sector workers and cut Universal Credit – or he will leave millions of families permanently worse off.
“The threat of a 15-year squeeze on incomes, comes after families have already suffered a decade of Tory austerity cuts and the damage of Brexit, which has taken billions out of the UK economy and pushed millions of people into poverty and hardship.
“By taking money out of people’s pockets, the Chancellor is making the Tory unemployment crisis even worse.
“He must think again and boost people’s incomes by reversing cuts to public sector pay, making the £20 uplift to Universal Credit permanent, extending it to legacy benefits, and delivering a fiscal stimulus of at least £98billion.
“Scotland shouldn’t have to wait for Westminster to act.
“By withholding investment and blocking the devolution of powers, the Tory government has hindered Scotland’s ability to respond to this crisis and is threatening Scotland’s recovery.
“The Scottish Government is best-placed and most-trusted to deliver a strong, fair and green recovery for Scotland but we can only do that with the full powers required.
“It is clearer than ever that the only way to properly protect Scotland’s interests is to become an independent country.”