Tag Archives: sarah olney

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

Back after a few days on grandparent duty…

  • Inflation figures: Nobody will notice this in their pockets
  • Three in four of worst hit constituencies for sewage dumping held by Conservative MPs
  • Mark Menzies scandal: Sunak must suspend the Whip

Inflation figures: Nobody will notice this in their pockets

Responding to the latest inflation figures, Liberal Democrat Treasury spokesperson Sarah Olney MP said:

Nobody will notice this in their pockets, with mortgage bills still skyrocketing after Liz Truss crashed the economy, and prices still so much higher than last year. By patting themselves on the back for this record, Rishi Sunak and Jeremy Hunt have proved just how out of touch they are.

Conservative Chancellors have presided over the worst cost of living crisis in living memory. The blame lies squarely with their gross economic incompetence.

Three in four of worst hit constituencies for sewage dumping held by Conservative MPs

  • 75 of the the top 100 constituencies for the worst number of sewage spills last year held by Conservative MPs
  • Rishi Sunak’s constituency was the 10th worst hit in England, with the duration of sewage dumping doubling to 42,000 hours in 2023
  • Theresa May’s seat of Maidenhead saw a staggering forty fold increase in duration of sewage dumping
  • Lib Dems warn of a “reckoning at the ballot box” from former Conservative voters furious about the sewage scandal

96% of Conservative held seats in England saw an increase in sewage dumping last year, with the worst constituency for sewage dumping facing 100,000 hours worth of spills, Liberal Democrat analysis of House of Commons Library research has shown.

Geoffrey Cox’s seat of Torridge and West Devon was the worst affected last year by sewage dumping, facing 97,000 hours worth of sewage being pumped into the area’s waterways, a 65% increase on 2022’s figure This was followed by Central Devon, Skipton and Ripon, Penrith and The Border, and Totnes, all of which experienced over 50,000 hours worth of dumps by water companies.

450 of the 508 seats in England saw a rise in the duration of sewage dumping and 456 saw a rise in the number of spills in 2023 compared to the previous year. In a staggering 96% of Conservative held seats in England there was an increase in sewage spills last year.

Posted in News and Press releases | Also tagged , , , and | Leave a comment

Sunak fails to back Sarah Olney’s call for free court transcripts for victims

Rishi Sunak today failed to back a call at Prime Minister’s Questions from our Sarah Olney, to change the law to give victims access to free court transcripts.

Sarah’s question was on behalf of her constituent, Juliana Terlizzi, who was drugged and raped by her then boyfriend in 2020. When Ms Terlizzi requested a copy of the court transcript to aid with her healing process, she was ordered to pay over £7,000 to access it. Ms Terlizzi, who was in the gallery for the question, branded Rishi Sunak’s response as yet more empty words, adding it was “a slap in the face” for victims.

This is not the only time this has happened One recent case involved a girl who was raped and sexually abused by her father, but whose family were then quoted £6,534 for the transcript of his trial.

Lib Dem peer Sal Brinton has proposed an amendment to the Victims’ and Prisoners’ Bill, scheduled for a vote in the House of Lords on Tuesday 23rd April, which would tackle these costs being charged to victims. It would allow all crime victims to request a transcript of the court’s summing up and sentencing remarks, so long as the trial took place in a court where the proceedings are recorded. This would include all crown court cases where serious offences, including robbery, rape and murder, are tried.

Sarah Olney said:

No victim or bereaved family should be forced to pay thousands to access a court transcript that’s part of their own story. The Prime Minister could easily tackle this injustice, but his government’s continued refusal to do so speaks volumes.

Posted in News | Also tagged , and | 3 Comments

12 April 2024 – today’s press releases

  • GDP figures: Economy stuck in the slow lane
  • Defence: Only the Lib Dems are committed to reversing troop cuts
  • Energy Minister stands down: Drumbeat of Conservative resignations is becoming deafening
  • More than half of councils see rise in sewage dumps
  • Jardine Secures Commons Debate on Consular Assistance

GDP figures: Economy stuck in the slow lane

Responding to the latest GDP figures, Liberal Democrat Treasury spokesperson Sarah Olney MP said:

This sluggish growth shows the UK economy is stuck in the slow lane under the Conservatives.

This government has no plan to fix the damage they’ve done to people’s living standards.

Instead we have a prime minister and Chancellor totally out of touch with families feeling the pinch. The only way to get the economy moving again is to kick this economically illiterate Conservative government out of office.

Defence: Only the Lib Dems are committed to reversing troop cuts

Responding to Labour and the Conservatives announcements on defence policy today, Liberal Democrat Leader Ed Davey said:

Only the Liberal Democrats are committed to reversing the Conservatives’ irresponsible cuts to Army troop numbers. With Putin waging war in Europe and Trump threatening the future of NATO, cutting the British Army by 10,000 troops is a major threat to our long-term national security.

Meanwhile, the Conservatives and Labour only offer meaningless talk about vague aspirations for some unspecified time in the future.

Posted in News, Press releases and Scotland | Also tagged , , , , , , , and | 3 Comments

5 April 2024 – today’s press releases

  • NICs: Prime Minister is still peddling this deception
  • Chamberlains’s Carer’s Leave Bill to come into force
  • 91,000 people call 999 or turn to A&E after struggling to get GP appointment
  • Rennie: Fall in modern languages teachers jeopardises vision for Scotland
  • Blackie: ‘My top priority: fix the Met’

NICs: Prime Minister is still peddling this deception

Responding to the changes to National Insurance (NI) and freezing of income tax thresholds coming into force tomorrow, Liberal Democrat Treasury spokesperson, Sarah Olney MP said:

The Prime Minister is still peddling this deception and voters will see straight through it.

Hammering the public with unfair stealth taxes and then claiming people will be taking home more in their pay packets is frankly offensive.

This is an out of touch Prime Minister leading a directionless Conservative government with his party more interested in clinging on to power than ensuring people are better off. They do not deserve to be in power for a moment longer.

Chamberlains’s Carer’s Leave Bill to come into force

The “landmark” Carer’s Leave Bill introduced by North East Fife MP and Scottish Liberal Democrat deputy leader Wendy Chamberlain will come into force on Saturday 6th April.

The Bill will give an estimated 2.4 million carers across the UK a statutory right to take five days of unpaid leave per year. Carer’s UK have described this as a ‘landmark’ piece of legislation which would help carers to better balance work and care.

Wendy Chamberlain introduced the Carer’s Leave Bill in June 2022 after winning a place in the Private Member’s Bill lottery. The Bill enjoyed cross-party support and was passed on 19 May 2023. The legislation comes into effect on 6th April 2024

Posted in London, News, Press releases and Scotland | Also tagged , , , , , , , and | 1 Comment

3 April 2024 – today’s press releases

  • Aid worker deaths: Davey calls on government to suspend arms sales to Israel
  • Royal Mail proposal to cut second class deliveries: Another slap in the face
  • London Lib Dems response to Khan economic announcement
  • Worst hit rivers for sewage dumps revealed as Lib Dems call for new Blue Flag status
  • Rennie responds to CalMac boss stepping down

Aid worker deaths: Davey calls on government to suspend arms sales to Israel

The Liberal Democrats have called on the government to suspend arms sales to Israel, following the deaths of seven aid workers including three British nationals in an Israeli air strike in Gaza.

Liberal Democrat Leader Ed Davey said:

The deaths of these British aid workers in Gaza is an absolute disgrace. These brave people were trying to help starving families in Gaza.

Clearly, the thought that British-made arms could have been used in strikes such as these is completely unacceptable.

The government must take swift action to suspend arms exports to Israel. We must redouble our efforts to secure an immediate bilateral ceasefire.

Royal Mail proposal to cut second class deliveries: Another slap in the face

Responding to the news that Royal Mail wants to reduce second class deliveries to three days a week, Liberal Democrat Business Spokesperson Sarah Olney MP said:

These plans are a slap in the face for families being asked to pay more for less.

The cost of first and second class stamps has gone up sharply in recent years. It risks creating a cost of postage crisis, as people feel forced to pay for first class stamps because second class delivery days are being slashed.

People shouldn’t have to pay the price for Royal Mail’s failure, after executives missed their delivery targets and paid themselves eye-watering bonuses.

London Lib Dems response to Khan economic announcement

Responding to Sadiq Khan’s joint economic announcement with Rachel Reeves today (Weds), Rob Blackie, the Liberal Democrat candidate for Mayor of London, said:

Labour’s plan ignores London’s biggest economic problem – Brexit. Labour are too scared to say that Brexit has damaged London’s economy, making us poorer and costing us jobs.

For instance, technology companies now have to spend time and money complying with two data laws, one each from the EU and the UK. And too many European citizens in London are made to feel unwelcome.

As Liberal Democrat Mayor I will campaign to fix the damage done by Brexit, and bring in a London passport to protect London’s EU citizen rights.

Posted in London, News, Press releases and Scotland | Also tagged , , , , , , , , and | 28 Comments

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:

Posted in News, Press releases and Scotland | Also tagged , , , , and | Leave a comment

28 March 2024 – today’s press releases (part 2)

  • Lib Dems call on Government to block Thames Water bill rises
  • 40% increase in hours of sewage dumped by Dwr Cymru last year
  • Renters reform: Gove caves in to Conservative MPs as manifesto promise left in tatters

Lib Dems call on Government to block Thames Water bill rises

  • The party is calling for a Ministerial intervention to block the proposals which could see customer bills rise by at least 40%
  • The Liberal Democrats have also demanded the Chancellor hold an urgent Downing Street summit with Thames Water bosses

Following the news that Thames Water’s shareholders have refused to inject £500 million of funding into the company unless water bills rise by 40% or more, the Liberal Democrats have called on the Government to block these proposals and ensure customers are not on the hook for the firm’s financial negligence.

The calls come after reports revealed that Thames Water is pushing the water regulator, Ofwat, to allow them to introduce large increases to customer bills in an effort to stay afloat.

The Liberal Democrats have also demanded for Chancellor Jeremy Hunt to hold an urgent Downing Street summit with Thames Water bosses to provide reassurance to taxpayers that they will not be liable should the company go bust.

This follows calls made by the party for the firm to be put into special administration and restructured into a public benefit company. This would ensure Thames Water becomes stable again and no longer be reliant on its failing board, forcing it to work in the interest of customers.

Liberal Democrat Treasury spokesperson, Sarah Olney MP said:

Thames Water are a polluting giant which has accrued billions in debt whilst pumping our rivers full of rotten sewage.

Ministers must intervene today and block any attempt by Thames Water to saddle customers with extortionate bill increases. Customers can’t be bailing them out of their own mess.

Jeremy Hunt should also call a Downing Street summit with Thames Water’s bosses to reassure taxpayers they will not be on the hook should the company go down.

Yet all this could still be avoided if Ministers put Thames Water into special administration immediately and reform it into a public benefit company. That’s the best way to ensure this polluting giant will begin working for its customers again.

40% increase in hours of sewage dumped by Dwr Cymru last year

New figures released by the Environment Agency have shown that Dwr Cymru discharged sewage into waterways for a staggering 23,354 hours last year, a 40% increase on 2022.

The Welsh Liberal Democrats are now calling for tougher action against sewage dumping in Welsh waterways.

The party has also called for a halt on bonuses for water company bosses whose firms have dumped sewage into waterways.

Conservative MPs have consistently voted against measures which would have helped to tackle the crisis.

Posted in News and Press releases | Also tagged , , , and | 2 Comments

28 March 2024 – today’s press releases (part 1)

  • GDP stats: Rishi’s recession confirmed
  • Thames Water: Broken firm needs to be taken into special administration
  • McArthur’s Assisted Dying Bill published by Scottish Parliament
  • Blackie unveils plan to “Green” the Silvertown Tunnel

GDP stats: Rishi’s recession confirmed

Responding to this morning’s ONS figures confirming the UK economy did go into recession last year, Liberal Democrat Treasury spokesperson Sarah Olney MP said:

These damning figures confirm the damage done to the UK economy by Rishi’s recession. This Conservative government has no plan for growth or to help families paying the price for years of economic chaos through soaring mortgages and rents.

The Liberal Democrats have a bold plan to get the economy growing again, fix our broken trading relationship with Europe and support small businesses on the brink. It’s clear the best thing for the economy would be a general election, so we can kick the Conservative Party out of power and offer the real change the country needs.

Thames Water: Broken firm needs to be taken into special administration

Responding to the news that Thames Water’s shareholders will not be injecting the first £500 million of funding that was agreed last summer, Liberal Democrat Treasury spokesperson and MP for Richmond Park Sarah Olney said:

Thames Water is a broken firm. It is teetering on the brink of collapse and it is clear that things cannot go on as they are.

Drastic action is needed to keep the taps running for millions of customers. Execs have pocketed sky-high bonuses, given billions to overseas investors whilst watching their infrastructure crumble. The board should hang their heads in shame.

No longer should this firm be allowed to mistreat customers and destroy our environment with their filthy sewage.

That is why ministers must use their powers to put Thames Water into special administration immediately, to then be reformed into a public benefit company. Only that way can we ensure this polluting giant will begin working for its customers again.

Posted in London, News, Press releases and Scotland | Also tagged , , , , and | 52 Comments

21 March 2024 – today’s press releases

  • Interest rates: Families are still facing a mortgage cliff edge
  • Khan ‘failing’ on Met Police reform – Lib Dems slam mayor’s record on first anniversary of Casey report
  • Cole-Hamilton challenges Yousaf on SNP Government’s climate record
  • Rennie responds to poverty statistics
  • Water Industry Commission for Scotland branded an embarrassment

Interest rates: Families are still facing a mortgage cliff edge

Responding to the Bank of England’s decision to keep interest rates at 5.25%, Liberal Democrat Treasury spokesperson Sarah Olney MP said:

This is cold comfort for millions of homeowners who still face massive hikes in their mortgage bills after Liz Truss crashed the economy. Many families still face a mortgage cliff edge despite this news.

Liz Truss’s disastrous mini-budget and the Conservative party’s economic vandalism has put intolerable pressure on people’s finances.

This Conservative government has no good story to tell on the economy.

The only way to break this cycle of stagnation and financial hardship is to kick this out of touch government out of office. Rishi Sunak needs to stop his desperate attempt to cling on to power and call an election.

Khan ‘failing’ on Met Police reform – Lib Dems slam mayor’s record on first anniversary of Casey report

A year on from the publication of Baroness Casey’s damning report on the Met police, London Mayor Sadiq Khan has made “no or only slow progress on key issues”, according to analysis by the Lib Dems.

Posted in London, News, Press releases and Scotland | Also tagged , , , , , , , and | 10 Comments

7 March 2024 – today’s press releases

  • Resolution Foundation reveals £8bn pensioner tax bombshell in Budget
  • “All the hallmarks of a backroom deal”- Welsh Lib Dems react to decision to keep new controversial Senedd voting system
  • Donelan scandal: Lib Dems demand ethics advisor probe and Science Minister to step aside whilst investigation ongoing
  • Carmichael calls for UK ban on imports from illegal Israeli settlements
  • SNP cancel bus fund after spending less than 6% – Rennie
  • McArthur responds to news that more crimes will not be investigated

Resolution Foundation reveals £8bn pensioner tax bombshell in Budget

Jeremy Hunt’s Budget includes an £8bn tax bombshell for pensioners, analysis from the Resolution Foundation has revealed.

All 8 million tax-paying pensioners will see their taxes increase due to the freezing of income tax thresholds. This will leave the average taxpaying pensioner £1,000 worse off by 2027-28, – or an £8 billion collective hit.

Responding to the analysis, Liberal Democrat Treasury Spokesperson Sarah Olney MP said:

Buried in the small print of this Budget is a disgraceful £8 billion pensioner tax bombshell.

People who have worked hard and done the right thing all their lives are being hammered by Jeremy Hunt with years of unfair tax hikes, leaving them an average of £1,000 worse off each.

This Conservative government has shown their true colours, pensioners are not their priority. They would rather cut taxes for the big banks than look after those who have given so much for so long to our society.

“All the hallmarks of a backroom deal”- Welsh Lib Dems react to decision to keep new controversial Senedd voting system

The Welsh Liberal Democrats have described the decision to keep the new Senedd voting system as having “all the hallmarks of a backroom deal”.

From 2026, votes will be cast for parties instead of individual candidates as part of plans to expand the Senedd.

Critics of the new voting system say that it takes power away from the voter and places it in the hands of political party bosses.

Posted in News, Press releases, Scotland and Wales | Also tagged , , , , , , , , , , and | 9 Comments

5 February 2024 – today’s press releases

  • NHS waiting lists: Sunak must reverse cuts to spending
  • OECD Report: UK set for highest inflation levels in G7
  • PopCon event: Blue Wall voters will look on with horror
  • Sunak’s broken promise: NHS waiting lists won’t fall back to pre-pandemic levels until 2030
  • Keegan gives government “good” Ofsted while children taught in crumbling classrooms

NHS waiting lists: Sunak must reverse cuts to spending

Responding to Piers Morgan’s interview with Rishi Sunak, where he admits he has failed to cut NHS waiting lists, the Liberal Democrat Health Spokesperson Daisy Cooper MP said:

Finally Rishi Sunak has admitted he has failed to cut NHS waiting lists, leaving millions of

Posted in News and Press releases | Also tagged , , , , , and | 2 Comments

12 January 2024 – today’s press releases

  • GDP stats: Sunak’s talk of turning a corner has not survived contact with economic reality
  • Lib Dems demand retrospective vote on government military action in the Red Sea

GDP stats: Sunak’s talk of turning a corner has not survived contact with economic reality

Responding to the latest figures that show GDP is estimated to have fallen by 0.2% in the three months to November 2023, Liberal Democrat Treasury spokesperson, Sarah Olney MP said:

This Conservative government has brought us nothing but stagnation. Sunak’s talk of turning a corner has not survived contact with economic reality.

This no growth Prime Minister has no plan and no

Posted in News and Press releases | Also tagged , and | 1 Comment

10 January 2024 – the overnight press release

MPs vote on blocking water firms receiving tax cuts unless they stop sewage discharges

  • 10 water firms paid no tax last year after government’s previous round of tax cuts on industry
  • Water firms who paid £1.4bn in dividends to overseas owners are now set to receive permanent tax cuts from government
  • Liberal Democrat amendment vows to block “water industry gravy train, where money and sewage flows freely”

Today, MPs expect to vote on a Liberal Democrat amendment to block disgraced water firms receiving a tax cut.

The Government’s Finance Bill allows water firms to fully expense the costs of investment in equipment, handing them a …

Posted in News and Press releases | Also tagged | 8 Comments

23 November 2023 – today’s press releases

  • Autumn Statement: NHS budget slashed by £5bn next year
  • Net migration figures: Conservatives need to accept that their approach isn’t working
  • Welsh Lib Dems leader calls for funding of the arts in Wales

Autumn Statement: NHS budget slashed by £5bn next year

The Conservative Government is cutting annual NHS spending by almost £5 billion in real-terms, figures buried in the small print of today’s Autumn Statement have revealed.

Jeremy Hunt has cut day-to-day spending in cash terms for NHS England in 2024-25 from £165.9bn in his March Budget to £162.5bn in the Autumn Statement, a cut of £3.4 billion.

In real-terms, that will leave the NHS budget £4.7 billion (2.9%) lower compared to 2022-23. It comes despite the Conservative government handing £3.8bn a year of tax cuts to the banks.

Jeremy Hunt also failed to mention GPs, dentists or ambulances once in his Autumn Statement today, despite the crisis facing patients and local health services across the country.

Liberal Democrat Treasury Spokesperson Sarah Olney MP:

It beggars belief that this Conservative government is slashing funding for the NHS while giving billions of pounds of tax giveaways to the banks. It just shows they have got their priorities completely wrong.

Jeremy Hunt failed to mention GPs, dentists or ambulances once in his Autumn Statement, showing just how out of touch he is.

Patients around the country are waiting months in pain for treatment and weeks to get an appointment with their GP. You can’t fix the damage the Conservative Party has done to our economy without fixing the damage they have done to our NHS.

Posted in News and Press releases | Also tagged , , , and | 6 Comments

22 November 2023 – today’s press releases

  • Cameron HMRC scrutiny: Zahawi scandal mark two
  • Autumn Statement a deception after years of Conservative tax hikes
  • Ed Davey slams “Hunt hoax” over £200bn stealth tax grab
  • Welsh Lib Dems urge Welsh Gov to make sure that building remediation costs aren’t being forced on residents
  • Conservative giveaway to big banks set to cost taxpayers £22 billion

Cameron HMRC scrutiny: Zahawi scandal mark two

The Liberal Democrats are calling for an ethics advisor probe after reports that David Cameron is being looked into by HMRC.

The party said it is important to know whether this reported scrutiny was disclosed when Rishi Sunak appointed him to the Lords and throughout the vetting process.

Liberal Democrat Chief Whip, Wendy Chamberlain MP said:

This looks like the Zahawi scandal mark two. Yet again, it appears Sunak has appointed a cabinet minister being looked into by HMRC.

The Prime Minister must ask the ethics advisor to investigate these reports as a matter of urgency. Serious questions need answering over whether this reported HMRC scrutiny was disclosed as part of the appointment and vetting process for Cameron’s seat in the Lords, and whether Sunak was aware when he appointed him.

Far from looking to kick sleaze out of the Cabinet, the Prime Minister seems to have sought to bring even more in from the outside.

Autumn Statement a deception after years of Conservative tax hikes

Responding to the Autumn Statement, Liberal Democrat Treasury spokesperson Sarah Olney MP said:

This is a deception from Jeremy Hunt after years of cruel tax hikes on hard-working families from this government.

Conservative chaos has sent mortgages and tax bills soaring, today’s announcements won’t even touch the sides.

Worse still was the deafening silence on health. These dismal forecasts show the economy is on life support and reducing NHS waiting lists is the shot in the arm needed.

It is a no-brainer that we need people off waiting lists and back to work, yet this Conservative government simply doesn’t care.

Today has been more stale nonsense from a Conservative government out of touch and out of ideas.

Posted in News and Press releases | Also tagged , , , , , , and | 1 Comment

One in three Brits miss work while waiting for healthcare

  • Shock poll reveals staggering number of working UK adults say they have missed work in the past year due to being stuck on waiting lists or attempting to see a GP or dentist
  • Half of young adults (18-34) missed work last year due to NHS waiting lists
  • Lib Dem MP warns crisis in the NHS is damaging economic growth as one in three adults missed work waiting for an appointment in the last year
  • Party calls on the Government to use the £13bn windfall to deliver 8,000 GPs, cut waiting times and improve mental health support, among other measures

A new poll, commissioned by the Liberal Democrats, has found that one in three working adults say they have missed work in the last year while waiting for a medical appointment or treatment on the NHS.

That includes over half (54%) of young adults (18-34) who say they’ve been forced to miss work in the past year due to soaring health waiting lists, including seeing GPs.

Posted in News and Press releases | Also tagged and | 2 Comments

Inflation figures “cold comfort” – Olney

So that’s all fine then. Inflation has fallen to 4.6% and Rishi Sunak is a hero for delivering on his promise?

Err, no.

The champagne corks popping in Downing Street are a bit premature and research commissioned by the Liberal Democrats  shows why.  Commons Library and Liberal Democrat research shows that average earners have seen their annual wages eroded with a real terms cut of almost £700, the equivalent of a 3p rise in Income Tax.

Our Treasury spokesperson Sarah Olney MP said:

Rishi Sunak congratulating himself over today’s figures will be cold comfort for all the hard-working people still bearing the brunt of this Conservative chaos.

For months on end, people across the country have been watching as their pay cheque gets squeezed from all sides, draining every spare penny. From the ever-increasing cost of the weekly shop to skyrocketing mortgage payments.

Enough is enough. With next week’s Autumn Statement the Government must properly help families and pensioners struggling with the cost-of-living crisis and give our NHS the funding it desperately needs.

Posted in News and Op-eds | Also tagged | 5 Comments

10 November 2023 – today’s press releases

  • GDP Stats: On the no growth path
  • 72 billion litres of sewage pumped into the River Thames in just two years
  • Welsh Lib Dem leader honours the fallen

GDP Stats: On the no growth path

Responding to the latest ONS figures which shows the UK economy stopped growing between July and September, Liberal Democrat Treasury Spokesperson Sarah Olney MP said:

Conservative chaos has delivered a hammer blow to our economy leading us down a no growth path.

Hard-working families shouldn’t be paying the price of the Conservative party’s economic vandalism.

The Autumn Statement should deliver a proper plan to grow the economy, fix our NHS and help with the cost-of-living crisis. Instead we’re set to see more of this Government’s failed approach.

72 billion litres of sewage pumped into the River Thames in just two years

  • Liberal Democrats uncover “horrifying revelations” from Information Request to Thames Water
  • Twickenham site suffers from almost 1 billion litres of sewage in just one day
  • Local Liberal Democrat MP slams “environmental crime” and demands Thames Water is “ripped up” to form new company

The River Thames has suffered from at least 72 billion litres of sewage discharges since 2020, the Liberal Democrats have discovered.

Posted in News and Press releases | Also tagged , , , and | Leave a comment

9 November 2023 – today’s press releases

  • Sharp rise in mortgage arrears should “ring alarm bells in Downing Street”
  • NHS waiting lists: Sunak’s pledge lies in tatters
  • Welsh Lib Dem leader gives her reason for voting for Senedd Gaza ceasefire motion
  • Braverman: What on earth will it take for Sunak to do the right thing?

Sharp rise in mortgage arrears should “ring alarm bells in Downing Street”

There has been an 18% rise in homeowners in mortgage arrears over the past year, the latest UK Finance figures have revealed.

The data shows there were 87,930 homeowners in mortgage arrears worth at least 2.5% of their outstanding loan in the third quarter of 2023, up from 74,420 in the same period last year.

The Liberal Democrats said the figures show families are facing “mortgage misery” and reiterated their calls for a Mortgage Protection Fund, with targeted support to prevent people losing their home, funded through scrapping tax cuts for the banks.

Liberal Democrat Treasury Spokesperson Sarah Olney MP said:

This sharp rise in mortgage arrears should be ringing alarm bells in Downing Street.

The Conservative Party crashed the economy and is now forcing ordinary families to pick up the tab.

Homeowners facing mortgage misery should be offered a rescue scheme, with targeted support to protect those most at risk of losing their home. It is the least this government could do after the economic damage they have caused.

NHS waiting lists: Sunak’s pledge lies in tatters

NHS waiting lists have reached a new record high of 7.8 million. It means that the waiting lists have grown every month since Rishi Sunak made his pledge in January that they would fall.

Liberal Democrat Health and Social Care spokesperson, Daisy Cooper MP said:

Posted in News and Press releases | Also tagged , , , , , , and | Leave a comment

30 October 2023 – today’s press releases

  • HSBC profits: Govt cut taxes for big banks over protecting people’s mortgages
  • Reynolds: Number 10 Culture of Chaos laid bare

HSBC profits: Govt cut taxes for big banks over protecting people’s mortgages

Responding to HSBC announcing it made quarterly profits of £6.35 billion, boosted by higher interest rates, and more than double what they were through the same period last year, Liberal Democrat Treasury spokesperson Sarah Olney MP said:

It was the Conservative party’s economic vandalism that crashed the economy and now the big banks are raking in massive profits off the back of working people’s spiralling mortgage payments.

To add insult to injury, this

Posted in News and Press releases | Also tagged , and | 9 Comments

2 October 2023 – today’s press releases

  • Hunt rules out tax cuts as Conservative soap opera continues
  • Water bill hike: Bosses paid £41m in bonuses while customers asked to pay for upgrades
  • Liz Truss’s £18,000 golden goodbye same as five-year mortgage hit for typical Blue Wall family
  • HS2: Rishi Sunak makes Liz Truss look like a political genius
  • Covid Inquiry: Sunak’s failure to send messages is another “Conservative cover up”

Hunt rules out tax cuts as Conservative soap opera continues

Responding to Jeremy Hunt’s latest comments this morning ruling out tax cuts this year, Liberal Democrat Treasury Spokesperson Sarah Olney MP said:

The Conservative Party are fighting like rats in a sack, while

Posted in News and Press releases | Also tagged , , , , , , , and | 22 Comments

29 September 2023 – today’s press releases

  • IFS comment: People are sick and tired of this unfair, irresponsible government
  • Sunak scrapping winter fuel allowance a “slap in the face” for pensioners

IFS comment: People are sick and tired of this unfair, irresponsible government

Responding to the IFS’s comments that this will be the biggest tax-raising Parliament on record, Liberal Democrat Treasury spokesperson, Sarah Olney MP said:

This Conservative government crashed the economy and is making the public pay the price. This is the same party which promised not to raise people’s taxes and is now taxing families through the nose.

Despite this, Ministers have given tax cuts to the big banks, failed

Posted in News and Press releases | Also tagged , and | Leave a comment

22 September 2023 – today’s press release

Families in Blue Wall hit with £3,000 “Truss tax” in year since mini-budget

New research reveals homeowners in London and the South East have seen their mortgage payments rise by £3,000 in year since mini budget

The two ‘Blue Wall’ regions are the hardest hit, compared to an average hit of £2,000 across the country

Those on a 2-year deal who remortgaged in the wake of the mini budget saw their mortgage rate jump by average of 1.69% to 5.17%

Homeowners in London and the South East have seen their mortgage payments rise by a staggering £3,000 in the year since Liz Truss’ shambolic mini budget, new research commissioned by the Liberal Democrats has revealed.

The party said it showed that homeowners are still paying a “Truss tax” on their mortgages and suffering the consequences of years of Conservative chaos.

According to figures provided by the House of Commons Library, typical homeowners coming out of a two-year deal in the week after the mini budget last September would have seen their rate shoot up from 1.69% to 5.17%.

Posted in News and Press releases | Also tagged | 25 Comments

20 September 2023 – today’s press releases

  • Latest inflation figures will be “of cold comfort”
  • Liberal Democrats call for increase to apprenticeship pay as dropout rates soar
  • Davey: Sunak is trashing the economy of the future
  • Over 1,000 sewage leaks in armed forces’ accommodation
  • Davey: This is not leadership from Rishi Sunak, this is putting the UK at the back of the queue

Latest inflation figures will be “of cold comfort”

The latest inflation figures show that inflation has fallen slightly to 6.7% from 6.8% in August. Responding to the news Liberal Democrat Treasury spokesperson, Sarah Olney MP said:

This news will be of cold comfort for families across the country still struggling with sky high prices and mortgages because the Conservatives have crashed the economy.

Ministers still simply haven’t got a clue how to protect hardworking people’s wallets during the cost of living crisis.

Rishi Sunak should not pat himself on the back whilst this crisis carries on, the Government must do more.

Liberal Democrats call for increase to apprenticeship pay as dropout rates soar

Apprenticeships in shortage occupations have fallen by up to 73%, research commissioned by the Liberal Democrats reveal, while in some sectors three in four apprentices are dropping out before completing their course.

It comes as the party is set to adopt proposals to increase pay for apprenticeships to at least the minimum wage, as part of a new industrial strategy being unveiled at its Autumn Conference this weekend.

A collapse in new apprenticeships is contributing to the crippling skills shortages affecting British businesses, making it even harder for them to fill vacancies. House of Commons Library research commissioned by the Liberal Democrats shows that sectors listed in the Government’s official “shortage occupation list” have seen particularly stark falls in apprenticeships.

Posted in News and Press releases | Also tagged , , , , , and | Leave a comment

19 September 2023 – today’s press releases

  • OECD Report: UK economy is “stuck in the slow lane”
  • Revealed: Truss taxpayer handouts now reach over £40k
  • Sunak has failed to embrace the industries of the future

OECD Report: UK economy is “stuck in the slow lane”

Responding to the lastest OECD report, Liberal Democrat Spokesperson for Treasury and Business Spokesperson Sarah Olney MP said:

This damning report shows that under the Conservatives, the UK economy is stuck in the slow lane. We’ve had zero apology from Liz Truss for trashing the economy, and now zero plan from Rishi Sunak to fix it.

It’s time for a proper plan to grow the economy and tackle the cost of living. That means boosting apprenticeships to tackle skills shortages and helping exporters by fixing the government’s botched trade deal with Europe.

Posted in News and Press releases | Also tagged , , , and | 1 Comment

18 September 2023 – today’s press releases

  • Truss refuses to apologise for mini-budget while pocketing taxpayer handouts
  • RAAC: Lib Dems win vote forcing govt to publish register of crumbling schools and hospitals

Truss refuses to apologise for mini-budget while pocketing taxpayer handouts

The Liberal Democrats have called for taxpayer-funded payouts to failed ministers to be scrapped, after Liz Truss today refused to apologise to households for the damage caused by her mini-budget.

In 2022, Liz Truss was paid £18,660 in severance pay for her failed tenure as Prime Minister. Meanwhile, former Chancellor Kwasi Kwarteng received £16,876 in severance pay, or £444 in taxpayers’ cash for each day he held office. …

Posted in News and Press releases | Also tagged , and | 2 Comments

13 September 2023 – today’s press releases

  • GDP stats: Sunak has failed to get a grip on the economy
  • Nutrient Neutrality: Lib Dems to vote against removing water pollution rules
  • PMQs: Davey raises Sunak’s failure on cancer as 22,000 people wait more than 4 months for treatment
  • Watchdog failing to audit water companies – Lib Dems call for inquiry
  • Levelling Up Bill: Government overruled for nutrient neutrality laws

GDP stats: Sunak has failed to get a grip on the economy

Responding to latest GDP stats which show the UK economy shrank by 0.5% in July 2023, Liberal Democrat Treasury spokesperson Sarah Olney MP said:

The Conservative government’s mismanagement of the economy is a burden on any chance of growth.

Rishi Sunak has utterly failed to get a grip on the cost of living crisis as mortgage costs continue to spiral and the price of a weekly shop goes through the roof.

Mortgage arrears are now at their highest since 2016 and families are wondering if they will once again be forced to choose between heating and eating this winter.

This out of touch Conservative government has completely failed on the economy.

Nutrient Neutrality: Lib Dems to vote against removing water pollution rules

Today in the House of Lords, the Liberal Democrats are voting against the Secretary of Housing Michael Gove’s plan to remove EU anti-water pollution laws- so called ‘nutrient neutrality’ rules in order to build more houses. This in turn could lead to more pollution in our already filthy rivers.

Posted in News and Press releases | Also tagged , , , , , , and | 2 Comments

12 September 2023 – today’s press releases

  • Wage Figures: Sunak must commit to triple lock now
  • NHS staff cannot be left to suffer in silence
  • Government may have broken law over sewage: “Environmental vandalism on an industrial scale”
  • Liberal Democrats welcome TfL’s new road safety charter

Wage Figures: Sunak must commit to triple lock now

Responding to today’s wage figures which would be used to uprate pensions, Liberal Democrat Treasury Spokesperson Sarah Olney MP said:

Rishi Sunak must commit now to the triple lock to ensure the state pension rises in line with the cost of living.

His failure to commit to the triple lock earlier this week will have left a cloud of uncertainty hanging over struggling pensioners. We also need a guarantee that welfare payments won’t be slashed in real terms.

Families and pensioners should not be made to pay the price for years of economic mismanagement under the Conservatives.

Posted in News and Press releases | Also tagged , , , , , , and | 5 Comments

Putting the leaves on the Magic Money Tree

Putting the leaves on the Magic Money Tree, seeking a radical Liberal approach to economics.

Fairness and the pursuit of it is essentially the purpose of the Liberal Democrats. If that is the case, how then do we expect to be taken seriously without that we have a radical agenda for economic reform?

The last 40 years of our national political story has been dominated by the Thatcher / Reagan /Hayek economic experiment. It has failed. If we agree that to be the case, then it is essential that rather than pretend to seek a better way to manage the status quo (in just the same way that we are supposed to be able to grow an economy without equality of access with our competitors to our nearest and largest market) that we commence the task of considering alternatives.

Free from the constraints of any economic dogma we are free to consider options in the widest and freest sense. Essentially, I believe that our core instinct is one where intervention and constraint of seemingly uncontrollable forces are our natural territory. Capital is like water, if left unchecked it will seek the easiest route. Unlike water, capital fails if it does not engender belief in those then required to consume its final output.

To this end the Social Liberal Forum are commencing on a series of events looking to consult and define a new exciting, entirely radical, free approach to economics.

Posted in Op-eds | Also tagged and | 30 Comments

14 June 2023 – the day’s press releases

  • GDP: Govt more obsessed with infighting than getting economy moving
  • Two bookies declare Lib Dems favourite to win Mid-Bedfordshire by-election
  • Mortgage misery: Sunak must hold emergency summit in Downing Street
  • By-elections: From Uxbridge to Selby people are sick to their back teeth with Conservative MPs
  • Johnson vs Jenkin: Conservative Party in full blown civil war
  • Dorries should step aside now

GDP: Govt more obsessed with infighting than getting economy moving

Responding to new GDP statistics which show a 0.2% rise in April, Liberal Democrat Treasury Spokesperson Sarah Olney MP said:

Month after month we see the economy growing at a snail’s pace – it’s clear this government is just totally out of ideas and out of control.

The Conservatives seem more obsessed with infighting than putting in the hard work needed to get our economy moving again.

This Government soap opera needs to end so we can get on with the job and give people a fair deal. We finally need to see a proper plan to grow the economy and tackle the soaring price of food, mortgage bills and energy.

Two bookies declare Lib Dems favourite to win Mid-Bedfordshire by-election

  • Ladbrokes and Betfred declare the seat a two-horse race between Liberal Democrats and Conservative party, with Labour in third
  • Odds slashed on Liberal Democrats to win crunch by-election as party makes a flying start to the campaign
  • Leader Ed Davey has made two visits to the constituency in the first week

Betting agencies Ladbrokes and Betfred have slashed the odds on the Liberal Democrats to win the Mid-Bedfordshire by-election.

Posted in News and Press releases | Also tagged , , , and | Leave a comment
Advert



Recent Comments

  • Simon R
    Since I wrote the above comment, the LibDem manifesto for London has been published (https://www.londonlibdems.org.uk/robblackie/our-manifesto) so to be fair I...
  • Phil Wainewright
    Instead of restricting individual freedom, surely we should simply tax at 100% all profits made from nicotine addiction?...
  • James Moore
    @David Raw Temperance was about individuals voluntarily agreeing to give up alcohol, not the central state banning people from drinking it. At the end of ...
  • Peter Davies
    Either that is a completely unreasonable administrative fee with no relation to the cost of finding and emailing the data or the administration of our court sys...
  • Alex A
    Free transcripts of entire trials for all victims for any reason at all is not a reasonable or practical demand. It may sound cold, but the courts exist to admi...