The Labour Party is set to announce that it will “end rip-off Britain” with policies that would reduce household bills across the UK, amounting to savings of over £6,700 a year for each family.
In a speech in Birmingham on Wednesday, John McDonnell will ask that people judge Labour on household savings as well as the public finances. The party in government could save families over £6,700 a year each, according to its own analysis.
The new research by Labour details how each of its policy offers would reduce bills for voters. Under its “plan for real change”, households would save:
- £559 on their dual-fuel energy bill;
- £364 on their broadband costs;
- £2,194 on a pair of season rail tickets;
- £2,941 on average for childcare per child;
- £108 on yearly prescription charges;
- £437 on free school meals;
- £113 on their water bill.
Labour calculates that these ‘retail’ policies would save families £6,716 – a sum that does not include an additional £6,888, from which a household with two people on minimum wage would benefit.
In his speech tomorrow, McDonnell is expected to say: “As Chancellor I want to ensure government has sound finances, but I want more than that. I want every family, every household in Britain to have sound finances.
“That means putting a stop to rip-off Britain and making real change so that people are not powerless in the face of profiteering monopolies, bad bosses at work and cast aside by a government that just stands by.
“Judge me on the public finances, but judge me too on the money in your pocket. You deserve better, and you will be better off under Labour. Where the Tories have failed, a Labour government will be on your side.”
The intervention from the Shadow Chancellor comes as the housing charity Shelter publish a report into the incidences of homelessness among children, showing that 183 children lose their homes every day.
McDonnell will say: “It’s three weeks to Christmas. This week the Channel 4 Dispatches programme reported on the reality of rising child poverty, a new Shelter report found 135,000 children will be without a home this Christmas, and an analysis by the Equality Trust shows the UK’s six richest people control as much wealth as the poorest 13 million.
“With children going hungry and homeless are we really living up to the values of Christianity or any other of our religions or beliefs for that matter?”
Labour’s analysis also reveals that under the Tory government has failed to curb rising household bills, which now cost families £5,949 a year. A report by the Resolution Foundation in July found that households were squeezed by rising prices and weak wage growth.
Earlier this year, the Office for National Statistics released data showing that living costs have risen faster for poorer households than their richer counterparts over the past decade.
Analysis from the TUC has shown that household debt has increased by a third to record levels in the past decade, while the ONS revealed in October that wages are still £20 below where they were in 2008.
A special report by the UN in 2018 found that 14 million people – a fifth of the population – live in poverty in the UK, and 1.5 million are destitute and unable to afford the basic essentials.