WBG analysis of the 2016 Budget: ‘Women will pay for the Chancellor’s tax cuts’
The Chancellor, George Osborne opened his Budget with a claim to “put the next generation first.”1 Yet he delivered a Budget that threatens to exacerbate inequalities and undermine the essential services – the care, education and health systems – that are the bedrocks of a secure society.
Women again stand to gain the least, and lose the most in a Budget that prioritises tax cuts for the better off and a lower rate of corporation tax at the expense of essential services and protecting the incomes of the poorest.
A cumulative analysis by WBG, which also includes public service cuts and all announcements up to and including the joint Autumn Financial Statement and Comprehensive Spending Review in November 2015, shows that female-headed households will see the largest drop in living standards over the 2010-20 period. By 2020, female lone parents and single female pensioners will, on average, have seen their living standards fall by 20% compared with what would have happened had these policy measures not been introduced. The policies of this Conservative government will be more regressive and hit women harder than those of the previous Coalition government.
WBG, (2016), A cumulative gender impact assessment of ten years of austerity policies, Women’s Budget Group, London