Wednesday, 13 March 2019 23:26



The SNP has said the UK government's Spring Statement was a missed opportunity to end Tory austerity and mitigate against the damage caused by Brexit.

Responding to the Chancellor, Kirsty Blackman MP said millions had suffered under a decade of failed Tory cuts and warned the UK now faced an impending Brexit disaster.

The SNP Economy spokesperson said the UK government should have brought forward an emergency budget with meaningful investment to boost incomes, reverse Tory cuts to Scotland's budget, and provide support to businesses and communities suffering from Brexit.

Commenting, Kirsty Blackman MP said:

"After a decade of damaging Tory austerity, we now face an impending Brexit disaster, which will inflict serious and lasting harm on jobs, living standards, public services and the economy.

"Scotland didn't vote for Brexit, austerity, or this Tory government. Yet, all of these things are being imposed on us, against our will, by Westminster - with devastating consequences.

"The Chancellor should have delivered an emergency budget today to end austerity, reverse the cuts to Scotland's budget, and deliver real investment - to mitigate against the damage the Tories are doing by pushing the UK off the Brexit cliff edge.

"This was a missed opportunity to put money back into people's pockets by ending the benefits freeze, halting the roll-out of Universal Credit, and introducing a real Living Wage for all.

"Scotland has been short-changed by billions under this Tory government. The Chancellor failed to reverse the nearly £2 billion of real terms cuts made to Scotland’s resource block grant since 2010, failed to deliver the £3.4billion Scotland is owed as a result of Tory bungs to the DUP, and failed to mention the £158million Scotland is due under the Stronger Towns fund.

"People are already poorer as a result of Brexit - and businesses are facing damaging uncertainty. We know Tory plans to drag Scotland out of the EU could cost 100,000 jobs and cause a recession. Today was a missed opportunity to mitigate the damage Brexit will do.

"Westminster is failing Scotland. It is increasingly clear that the only way to properly protect Scotland's interests and ensure a more prosperous future is with independence."  

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