A one-off energy cap is not enough

Date Posted: Tuesday 6th September 2022

cost of livingEarly Education and ChildcareEmployment

The cost of living crisis is hitting the poorest women hardest, but the tax cuts that Liz Truss is proposing will largely benefit better-off men. Truss focused her leadership campaign on tax cuts, including national insurance. Our analysis shows that a NI cut would save women less each year than men. It would also leave a gap of £13bn for health and social care, sectors in which women are overrepresented. These policies will cut taxes for the highest earners while doing little to ease the current crisis.

While a freeze on the energy cap offers a temporary reprise, paying it back through taxation does nothing to address the crisis of cost faced by consumers while energy producers make record profits. The Windfall tax super deduction and other tax subsidies to energy producers are completely inappropriate measures at this time. We need to see an overhaul of the energy sector to ensure its long-term sustainability without plunging two-thirds of families into fuel poverty by January 2023. Retrofitting of homes needs to take place both for the health of families and as a part of tackling the climate crisis.

Women’s financial resilience has been eroded by a decade of benefit and public sector cuts. The cost-of-living crisis is going to last for at least all of 2023. One-off payments will not be enough to stop millions of households from falling into poverty. Sustainable social security and investment in our future must come from taxes on wealth.