2 April 2024 – today’s press releases (part 1)

  • Stealth taxes to drag 1.6 million pensioners into paying income tax
  • Sunak laughing on radio: Stop hunkering in offices and call an election
  • Cole-Hamilton: No one should have to wait 12 hours at A&E
  • More than 1,900 stuck in hospital

Stealth taxes to drag 1.6 million pensioners into paying income tax

1.6 million pensioners are set to be dragged into paying income tax due to the government’s stealth tax freeze by 2027/28, new research commissioned by the Liberal Democrats has revealed.

The House of Commons Library analysis looks at the impact of the Chancellor’s decision to freeze the personal allowance at £12,570, the rate at which people start paying tax. Without the stealth tax freeze, the allowance would have risen to £15,220 in the coming financial year (2024/25) and up to £15,990 in 2027/28.

The analysis estimated that around 1.2 million pensioners will be dragged into paying income tax in 2024/25. By 2027/28, 1.6 million additional pensioners will be paying income tax compared to if the Personal Allowance had been increased in line with inflation.

The latest DWP figures show there are 12.7 million people receiving the state pension. According to the Institute for Fiscal Studies, well over 60 per cent of these pensioners now pay income tax, up from around 50% in 2010. The research found 8.5 million people over the age of 65 were now paying tax on their income, up from roughly 4.9 million in 2010.

Separate analysis from the Resolution Foundation has found that the freezing of income tax thresholds will leave the average taxpaying pensioner £1,000 worse off by 2027-28, or a collective hit of £8 billion.

Commenting, Liberal Democrat Treasury Spokesperson Sarah Olney MP said:

These stark figures reveal the stealth tax bombshell facing pensioners under this Conservative government.

Older people who have worked hard and contributed all their lives are now being clobbered with years of unfair tax hikes.

Jeremy Hunt’s pensioner-punishing Budget will not be forgotten come the next election. The Conservative Party faces a reckoning at the ballot from older voters sick of being taken for granted.

Sunak laughing on radio: Stop hunkering in offices and call an election

Responding to Rishi Sunak laughing at being asked when the next General Election will be on BBC Radio Tees, Liberal Democrat local government spokesperson Helen Morgan MP said:

Rishi Sunak laughing in the face of people crying out for change is the perfect example of how careless, callous and chaotic this Conservative Party is.

While Sunak clings on it’s obvious that people up and down the country are demanding he and this rabble stop hunkering in their offices.

We need a General Election now. People want the opportunity to kick the Conservatives out of power and they know they can by electing Liberal Democrats MPs.

Cole-Hamilton: No one should have to wait 12 hours at A&E

Responding to new figures showing only 65.4% of people attending A&E were seen within the 4 hour target in the week ending 24th March, while 1,344 people waited over 12 hours, Scottish Liberal Democrat leader and health spokesperson Alex Cole-Hamilton said:

Thousands of patients every week waiting over half a day at A&E is just unacceptable, yet it has become the norm under the SNP.

Patients and staff alike deserve better than this, so we urgently need to see action from the new Health Secretary to reverse this situation.

Scottish Liberal Democrats would overhaul the NHS Recovery Plan, bring forward an urgent inquiry into the hundreds of avoidable deaths linked to the emergency care crisis and implement measures which will meaningfully tackle burnout among staff.

More than 1,900 stuck in hospital

Responding to new Public Health Scotland figures which show 1,914 people were suck in hospital in February due to their discharge being delayed, up 3% from the previous month and representing the second highest monthly delayed discharges on record, Scottish Liberal Democrat leader Alex Cole-Hamilton MSP said:

Far from eradicating discharges, this SNP government is watching them soar to alarming levels. People should never have to wait weeks or months in hospital for a care home place or help to return home.

The SNP’s ill-fated centralisation of social care will do nothing to ease pressures. This billion-pound bureaucracy must be scrapped, not salvaged.

Scottish Liberal Democrats would devote that money to frontline services and staff instead, driving up the quality of care and rewarding staff with better pay and conditions.

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This entry was posted in News, Press releases and Scotland.

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