WBG Budget Representation 2023
Date Posted: Friday 3rd February 2023
Each year, HM Treasury consult civil society ahead of the Spring Budget. This year, as the cost-of-living crisis continues to bite, our submission focuses on investing in public services to restore living standards that have been eroded by inflation and falling wages and to strengthen the economy.
Strong and well-funded public services are key to a healthy economy and for improving living standards. Instead of the spending cuts planned for after 2025, WBG calls on the Government to invest in social infrastructure to restore standards of living, tackle gender inequalities and strengthen our economy.
Investing in early education and childcare would help reduce the attainment gap, support participation of women in the labour market and create millions of jobs. Similarly, investing in adult social care would ensure that people’s needs are met in a way that supports their wellbeing and allows more people to join the paid labour market.
The social security system should promote well-being for all, decent living standards and opportunities for everyone. The current system is failing vulnerable people and compromising the aims of Universal Credit.
Local Government funding needs to be restored to a level which enables councils to meet their statutory obligations as well as providing vital preventative, non-statutory services.
Tax exemptions and reliefs for oil and gas companies should be abolished and fiscal incentives transferred to green and clean energy sources. The tax system should be reformed, integrating taxation of capital gains and incomes from work into a single schedule with progressive bands, taxing wealth directly rather than just its transactions and transfers, increasing revenue to the Treasury to invest in green physical and social infrastructure.
HM Treasury should ensure a comprehensive and meaningful cumulative equality impact assessment is undertaken before the budget is finalised and any adverse policy impacts mitigated.