Plough money into social care, not tax cuts

Tax cuts for the rich have deprived the UK public of almost £14 billion - an amount that would fund plans to address the social care crisis for two full years.

That is according to the findings of new UNISON analysis, which has calculated that the savings for super-earners with incomes of more than £1 million a year have reduced payments to the Treasury by £13.98 billion, between 2013 and the current financial year 2019/2020. As a result the UK’s millionaires have paid £782,000 less tax on average over seven years.

However, whilst the highest earners have enjoyed hundreds of thousands of pounds in savings as a result of a reduced top rate of income tax, millions of people have struggled financially in recent years. The UNISON union says that plans to cut taxes, outlined by both Conservative party leadership candidates, should instead be used to tackle growing social care problems.

Dave Prentis, UNISON general secretary, said: “The Conservative leadership candidates have got their priorities all wrong. The whole country knows social care is in urgent need of major reform, but sees politicians continually kicking the can down the street while offering tax sweeteners to people who are already more than well off.

“The elderly and other vulnerable people need the care sector to be funded properly. It also needs an injection of cash to better value the work of those in the care sector. They are the lifeline that helps people with complex needs stay in their own homes yet are being paid less than workers stacking supermarket shelves. Instead of helping the rich line their pockets, the government should be ploughing money into services which make a real difference to society and our ageing population across the whole of the UK. This lost £14 billion would not have been a permanent fix but could have been a step in the right direction.”