Yvonne Fovargue MP: Damage has already been done by Liz Truss budget

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The fallout from the Liz Truss Kamikaze budget has continued unabated.

The Government’s ‘Growth Plan’ outlined £45 billion worth of unfunded tax cuts.

Measures included abolishing the top rate of income tax for the highest earners, cancelling a planned rise in corporation tax – both of which have since been reversed in the face of opposition – and removing the cap on bankers’ bonuses.

The Government said the plan will “boost growth”.

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Makerfield MP Yvonne FovargueMakerfield MP Yvonne Fovargue
Makerfield MP Yvonne Fovargue

But economists are sceptical and the measures have alarmed the markets: the pound fell to a record low; lenders withdrew mortgage products and

increased mortgage rates; and the Bank of England triggered an emergency £65 billion bond-buying programme to restore orderly market conditions.

The Institute for Fiscal Studies said the plan risks putting the public finances on an unsustainable path, with large increases in borrowing and only those with incomes over at least £155,000 benefiting.

Meanwhile, there was no announcement on public spending as services face real-terms cuts owing to record inflation.

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Last week, the Prime Minister sacked the Chancellor and announced a further U-turn; reversing her commitment not to raise corporation tax to 25%.

However, the damage has already been done to millions of ordinary people now paying much higher mortgages and struggling to make ends meet.

This has been followed by U-turn after U-turn by the Prime Minister.

Concerns have also been raised about what these measures mean for our health service.

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Public satisfaction with the NHS has fallen to its lowest level since 1997 as it continues to deal with growing backlogs, record waiting lists and widespread staff vacancies.

I believe in a sound economic approach, with all pledges fully and fairly funded.

Labour has set out its plan to boost NHS investment by ending the outdated non-dom tax status regime, raising more than £3.2 billion a year to pay for an expansion of the NHS workforce: doubling medical school places; creating 10,000 more nursing and midwifery placements every year; doubling the number of district nurses trained every year; and training 5,000 more health visitors.

We must ensure our health service has the staff, modern equipment and technology it needs to treat patients on time.

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I reject any argument that we should abandon a publicly funded NHS free at the point of use.

As I pen this column my thoughts are with the family of Coun Anthony Sykes.

Anthony passed away after illness and represented Ashton ward.

From first meeting Anthony, I knew that he would be a dedicated public servant and he was a popular and respected figure both in the local Labour Party and the wider Ashton area that he represented.

I shall miss him very much and extend my condolences to his family and friends.