This morning I attended a debate in Parliament on balancing the public finances. This was a very well attended debate and highlighted how important it is as a country to live within our means.
While I sympathise with those workers, both public sector and private sector, who have not seen their wages rise as much as they would like, this morning’s debate talked about why we can’t abandon restraint too quickly.
We have more people in work than ever before. We have the lowest unemployment for over 40 years. We have the lowest gender pay gap for 30 years.
The wealthiest 3000 people in the country pay as much tax as the poorest 9 million people. Those on the minimum wage have seen their earnings increase by 26% since 2010 adding £3,200 per year to their earnings and the increased tax free earnings allowance has allowed everyone who pays income tax to keep over £1000 per year more of their own money.
The Conservatives failed to make these points in the recent general election and we paid the price for that.
There is much more to do but we shouldn’t be shy in talking about our successes so far.