Nearly a quarter of a million children in Greater Manchester will be affected by Tory cuts to tax credits
Lucy has hit back at the government over their plans to cut tax credits, after The Children's Society warns that 123,600 low-paid families across the region would lose out under George Osborne's plans. This could mean 239,500 children across Greater Manchester being hit, almost 50,000 of these in Manchester alone.
Lucy has written an article for the Independent on the Tories' plans to reinstate grammar schools:
Have the Tories convinced you yet that they care about social justice? David Cameron said in his conference speech last week that we cannot accept that Britain has the lowest levels of social mobility in the developed world. And Nicky Morgan, the Education Secretary, has said that the Conservatives are going to extend opportunity to every single child. These are statements that we can all agree with. There's a slight catch though – the Tories don't actually mean any of it.
As we’ve seen, it’s all too easy for politicians to churn out feel-good words. But unless it’s followed up with actions that back them up, the words are meaningless. And the Conservatives have just confirmed what we suspected all along: that they are not interested in tackling inequality in our schools system, or in raising standards for all children regardless of their background. Because after months of hand-wringing over the decision, the Government has approved the first new grammar school in 50 years.Read more
Lucy spoke today at the Local Government Association’s Children and Adult Services Conference in Bournemouth talking about Labour’s approach to achieving excellence in partnership with local government.
Achieving excellence in partnership – Speech to the Local Government Association National Children and Adult Services Conference 2015
It’s great to be here with you today as Labour’s Shadow Education Secretary.
Lucy has criticised Chancellor George Osborne after figures released today revealed that a quarter of a million people in Greater Manchester (almost 25%) are paid below the £7.85 living wage.
Speaking of the government's pledge to introduce its own so-called "Living Wage" of £7.20 - less than that recommended by experts - while simultaneously cutting tax credits, Lucy accused Osborne of ‘giving with one hand and taking with the other.'
Recent analysis by the Institute for Fiscal Studies found that the government's own "Living Wage" of £7.20 would come "nowhere near" to compensating working families for cuts to tax credits, covering only around a quarter of the income lost.Read more
Lucy has raised concerns about tax credit cuts in Manchester Central, after new figures show the cuts could hit more than half of families in the North West.
Reports this week suggest that David Cameron is considering drastically cutting tax credits, with average losses to families of £1,400 a year. To make up for that loss, someone working full time at the National Minimum Wage would have to work an additional six weeks.
And yet again, cities like Manchester will be hit the hardest by this government’s policies. New figures from Labour show that 56 per cent of families with children in the North West could be disadvantaged by Cameron’s tax credit cuts. Just over half of young families across the UK receive tax credits, but in the North West this rises to 56%, and 72% of these families in work.
Lucy has hit back at the government’s proposals, arguing that Tory cuts are once again hitting working families and disproportionally affecting cities and communities in the North.Read more
The Tories have repeatedly refused to rule out cutting tax credits for working families. Labour will protect tax credits and cut taxes for 24 million working families.
The Tories will cut tax credits to pay for their massive spending black hole and working families will pay the price. This election is a clear choice between the Tories' failing plan and Labour's better plan for working families.
Commenting on David Cameron’s visit to Manchester Labour and Co-operative MP for Manchester Central Lucy Powell said:
“David Cameron has a cheek visiting Manchester and proclaiming his support for the North on the same day Manchester City Council is announcing further drastic cuts to their budget as a result of the unfair local government finance settlement.
People will not be fooled by the Prime Minister’s weasel words when the city has paid a heavy price for his failed economic plan.
This week Lucy sat on a panel held in Parliament to look at the Costs of Going to School. This inquiry is being run the by the Children's Society Children’s Commission on Poverty.
Lucy met with a group of young commissioners, witnesses and adult panellists to develop a clearer picture on how poverty affects children in school, what support is provided to children in these positions and what the possible solutions are.
Today Lucy has reacted to the news that a third food bank has opened in the Hulme and Moss Side areas of her constituency.
Speaking to the Manchester Evening News, Lucy said: “It is shameful that so many people now rely on food banks. Living without any support causes extreme poverty and many people have found it simply isn’t possible to feed themselves or their families.”
Lucy has backed a cross-party charter to tackle irresponsible payday lending companies. The measures included in the ‘Stop the Payday Loan Rip-off’ Charter would prevent lenders from acting unscrupulously, or lending money to those who can’t afford it. They would also bring an end to hidden charges and limit what kind of advertising payday loan companies can engage in.
Payday lenders, offer short-term loans customers who run out of money while waiting for monthly pay cheques. However, they have been widely criticised for charging vulnerable people sky-high interest rates which can be as much as 5,000% a year.
The Charter is supported by some of Britain’s biggest debt, consumer and anti-poverty organisations – including Which?, Citizens Advice, StepChange Debt Charity, Church Action on Poverty, and the Centre for Responsible Credit.