Chi Onwurah MP for Newcastle Central spoke in yesterday’s budget debate highlighting the impact of austerity on the people of Newcastle.
“ A few weeks ago I spent a day with Northumbria Police Austerity has cut their budget by a third, the largest cut in the country – and now the Government is trying to fiddle a further 11 million out of them in pensions payments. So that’s a third less bobbies on the beat, and rising crime.
Chi speaking in the budget debate
She pointed out that she is now having to holding surgeries just on crime.
Ms Onwurah pointed to the consequences of government austerity in slashing youth services, rising homelessness, poverty and mental health issues. All of which result in extra work for the Police in addition to cyber crime, historical sex abuse and current-day sexual exploitation and trafficking.
She stated: “ Under the Tories the police are protecting us not only from the wrong-doers on the streets but the wrong-doers in Government.
Chi also pointed to the negative impact of austerity schools:
“Austerity will have cut per pupil spending in Newcastle by £416 with parents & teachers forced to buy essential supplies. Further education has lost £3.3 Billion so if you are a refugee trying to learn English or a Mum needing training to get back to work you are too often, out of luck.
Regarding transport Chi stated:
“ Investment delayed by Tory LibDem Government means my constituents now face daily misery on the metro and buses are too expensive for many. Under austerity transport funding in the North East is just one fifth that in London.
Ms Onwurah highlighted the devastation on local services, including waste collections, parks and libraries, because of the austerity cuts imposed by the Tory government on Newcastle City Council by cutting its funding from central government in half at a time of rising demand
She pointed to the many other areas of austerity still impacting on people in Newcastle:
“ Mr Speaker I wanted to lay out the impact of austerity on my constituency but even if you gave me a week there would not be enough time to describe whats happened on homelessness, social care, the NHS, foodbanks, poverty, mental health, jobs…
“ Austerity is an ideology, an ideology that chose to put the responsibility for the financial crisis caused by casino capitalism and reckless bankers on the shoulders of the poor, the disabled, the young, the unemployed and the working people of this country.
“ The Chancellor and the Prime Minister say austerity is over, but it will live on in the daily experience of my constituents who have been betrayed by it.
The Chancellor’s budget will be voted upon this Thursday.
Notes for Editors
- Chi’s budget speech:
- Parliament TV: