A bad bud­get for work­ing fam­i­lies, the vul­ner­a­ble and our young peo­ple

Rutherglen Reformer - - Memory Lane - Holy­rood Head­lines James Kelly

Last week’s sum­mer bud­get from Ge­orge Os­borne has left work­ing peo­ple worse off and fails the test of build­ing a more pro­duc­tive econ­omy.

No amount of Tory spin can hide the fact that this is a bad bud­get for work­ing fam­i­lies, our most vul­ner­a­ble and our young peo­ple.

You can’t be the party of work­ing peo­ple if you de­liver a Bud­get which leaves those on mid­dle and low in­comes worse off, which fails to boost pro­duc­tiv­ity and ducks the big is­sues on in­fra­struc­ture.

Hous­ing is ma­jor is­sue in this con­stituency and I have long called for the UK and Scot­tish Gov­ern­ments to launch an am­bi­tious house build­ing pro­gramme in Ruther­glen and Cam­bus­lang, how­ever their record on this is­sue is one of fail­ure and last week’s Bud­get of­fered just more of the same.

With a hous­ing build ini­tia­tive comes new jobs and ap­pren­tice­ships and what we need more than ever is high qual­ity train­ing and ap­pren­tice­ships for young peo­ple, not re­badg­ing of ex­ist­ing qual­i­fi­ca­tions and train­ing al­ready tak­ing place.

Let’s cre­ate the skilled work­force needed to boost pro­duc­tiv­ity and wages.

On in­fra­struc­ture Bri­tain is ranked 27th in the World Eco­nomic Fo­rum’s rank­ings for in­fra­struc­ture in­vest­ment – this is sim­ply not good enough.

Fair­ness should be at the heart of the Gov­ern­ment’s ap­proach to hous­ing.

David Cameron and Ge­orge Os­borne should not get dis­tracted from the real prob­lem of a chronic lack of af­ford­able house build­ing across the coun­try.

The Bud­get was less about eco­nomic strat­egy, more about po­lit­i­cal tac­tics de­signed by the Chan­cel­lor to help him move in next door to Num­ber 10.

From next year, Scot­land has the op­por­tu­nity to do things dif­fer­ently.

With the new pow­ers com­ing to the Scot­tish Par­lia­ment, we can de­liver a fairer bud­get for young peo­ple, work­ing fam­i­lies and our vul­ner­a­ble.

The chal­lenge for the SNP Gov­ern­ment in Ed­in­burgh is to make clear how they will use these sig­nif­i­cant new pow­ers to make a real dif­fer­ence to work­ing fam­i­lies in Scot­land.

All aboard…

Last Wed­nes­day I stopped by the Ruther­glen Health cen­tre to show my sup­port for the Play Talk Read bus which helps young­sters en­joy a bet­ter start in life.

As a fa­ther my­self I could see im­me­di­ately see the ben­e­fits of the play bus fa­cil­i­ties, which of­fers some truly in­no­va­tive ideas through games, sto­ries and songs.

Play­ing, talk­ing and read­ing with your young chil­dren can make them hap­pier and health­ier now and in the fu­ture.

If you have young chil­dren I would highly rec­om­mended vis­it­ing the play bus – more in­for­ma­tion can be found on their Face­book page –‘Play Talk Read’.

Booked up James Kelly MSP paid a visit to the Play Talk Read bus when it paid a visit to Ruther­glen Pri­mary Care Cen­tre last week

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