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- Sheffield Labour Council: Seeking Sheffield Businesses to Kickstart Electric Vehicle Revolution
- Memo to Aspiring Sheffield Hallam Candidates
- Speech to Full Council: Council Tax Benefit
- Joining ASDA Community Team for a local Litter Pick
- Labour delivers a Living Wage for Sheffield
- Hestletine admits error - now we need solutions
- Hacked off
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Speech to Full Council: Council Tax Benefit
The speech below was delivered to a meeting of the Sheffield Full Council, in response to the Coalition’s plan to force Local Authorities to charge working-age people who currently receive Council Tax Benefit.
*** CHECK AGAINST DELIVERY ***
Thank you, Lord Mayor. All we are getting from the Liberal Democrats today are crocodile tears – pretending to oppose the Government’s direction, when in reality they are the co-pilots.
They have completely forgotten what Sheffield people are going through thanks to their government:
• The coalition has failed completely on jobs and growth, with youth unemployment at its highest ever and five people chasing every job.
• The coalition allowed energy bills to rise by £300 per year.
• The coalition raised VAT, even though it promised not to.
• The Coalition introduced the Bedroom tax, which could double homeless applications
• The coalition is imposing real terms cuts to tax credits, jobseekers allowance and child benefit.
• And the coaltion is spending millions of pounds on tax breaks for people who already have millions of pounds.
• And now, the coalition has slashed Council’s money and is forcing them to reduce Council Tax Benefit.
But even this pain isn’t being spread fairly: David Cameron’s Oxfordshire constituency is losing £40 per person, whilst the Sheffield supposed-constituency of Nick Clegg is losing £200 per person.
This government’s actions are no less than warfare on the poorest people in our city.
Bit by bit, step by step, the government is destroying the safety net people rely on when they fall on hard times.
So across the country, who will have to pay this Council Tax benefit?
• If you are a young person, who leaves home, full of hope – the Coalition will make you pay.
• If you are a disabled person, determined to live an independent life - the Coalition will make you pay.
• If you receive council tax benefit because you’re pregnant and getting ready to start a family - the Coalition will make you pay.
• If you are a single parent, trying your best to bring up your children – the Coalition will make you pay.
• And if you are a refugee, running scared life and fleeing some of the worst conditions on the planet - the Coalition will make you pay
The Coalition will make everyone who isn’t one of their natural supporters pay. This is targeted and deliberate. This is the most cynical, devious and vicious government that Britain has ever had. Does any one of you feel proud of what your Government is doing to these people?
I honestly do not know how a single Liberal Democrat can look at themselves in the mirror anymore, given what they are doing to the most vulnerable people in our society.
They should be fully ashamed of themselves and what their support is allowing to happen.
A New Politics
As a local ward Councillor and community activist giving people a voice is one of my top priorities. I want everyone to feel they have a stake in our society - politics is central to that.
Click here to find out more about my style and the way forward