LIVING STANDARDS HIT IN STOCKPORT – My article for the Stockport Express

living standards graphicWhen David Cameron entered Downing Street in 2010, he said that he wanted to see an economy where your standard of living “rose steadily”. He promised to help working families with the rising cost of living.

Unfortunately, we all know what’s happened since. After inflation, working people in the North West are an average of £1,685 worse off a year since 2010, when David Cameron entered Downing Street. And it’s only going to get worse.

New figures show that David Cameron is now the worst Prime Minister for living standards on record. This week, Labour has revealed the full scale of the cost of living crisis facing families in our area under David Cameron. Prices have risen faster than wages in all but one month of his premiership. He’s now presided over 36 months of falling real wages. No Prime Minister since records began comes close to this dubious record.

And in the one month that wages rose faster than prices – April this year – it was because bank bonuses soared to take advantage of David Cameron’s tax cut for millionaires. Analysis of forecasts by the House of Commons Library shows that, with wages set to plunge further in the coming years, the average worker will have lost £6,660 in real terms by 2015 – enough to pay for the average family weekly shop for almost a year and a half.

That’s the price that we’re paying for five years of this Tory-led Government.

David Cameron is totally out of touch. His economic policies have failed, and working families are being left massively out of pocket.

Labour would help middle- and low-income families right now by reintroducing a 10p starting rate of tax, paid for by a mansion tax on homes worth over £2 million, leaving 2,630,000 in the North West with more money in their own pocket.

We would also act to tackle the energy bills that just seem to keep on going up by forcing the big energy companies to use their profits to keep bills down. Rather than give millionaires a tax cut, Labour would protect the tax credits that help working families to make ends meet – rather than slash them, as David Cameron and George Osborne have done.

Families in Stockport know that, rather than never having had it so good as the Tories try to tell them, they are finding it harder and harder to make ends meet and are having to make their money stretch further all the time.

We know that David Cameron stands up for the wrong people. It’s time for him to wake up and adopt Labour’s plan to help working people – not keep filling the pockets of those at the top.

This article has been written for the MP’s column in the Stockport Express and Stockport Times newspaper

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