Businesses round here tell me times are tough. Bills are going up and people are working harder to make ends meet. That amounts to a cost of living crisis for people across Tameside and Stockport – and a threat to our local economy.
Businesses and the Chamber of Commerce repeatedly raise concerns about growing bills, telling me that energy bills are the second largest cost that they face. Local businesses are crucial to our community and I won’t see them left out in the cold by this Tory government.
Since David Cameron has been in Downing Street prices have risen faster than wages in 38 out of 39 months and energy bills have gone up by almost £300. When the price of energy increases energy companies pass this on but when it drops consumers don’t see their bills fall.
The problem is David Cameron can’t deal with the cost of living crisis because he stands up for a privileged few, not for ordinary people. While small businesses struggle to get credit, banker’s bonuses are up 82%. We can only tackle the cost of living crisis by building an economy that works for working people.
So I’m delighted that Ed Miliband has announced that Labour will freeze prices until the start of 2017 if Labour wins the next election. And he says we will break up the big energy companies so that we can all get a fair deal.
This will save a typical household £120 and an average business £1,800.
But businesses and people round here need help now. So I’m calling on David Cameron to take action and freeze our bills now. And I’m asking local people and businesses to sign my petition today so that the voices of Tameside and Stockport are heard loud and clear in Downing Street.
You can sign the petition at www.labour.org.uk/freeze-that-bill or tweet a picture of your bill with the hashtag #freezethatbill.