Women hit over twice as hard as men by autumn statement, says Labour
New House of Commons research figures show that the changes to direct tax and pay in the Autumn Statement hit women more than twice as hard as men, according to Labour.
It says that of the £2.37 billion raised from tax credits and public sector pay changes in Tuesday's autumn statement, the House of Commons Library estimates that 73 per cent (£1.73 billion) will be coming from women and 27 per cent (£638 million) from men.
Yvette Cooper, shadow minister for women, said: “Time and again, this Government is making women take the greatest strain, even though they still earn less and own less than men. If you look at all the changes to direct tax, benefits, pay and pensions announced by the Chancellor since the General Election, of the £18.9 billion that the Government is raising each year, £13.2 billion is coming from women and £5.7 billion from men. Women are being hit twice as hard.
“The Government is clearly shockingly out of touch with women’s lives. They have been warned repeatedly that their policies disproportionately affect women, not just by Labour, the Fawcett Society and women’s organisations across the country, but by their own internal memos and advice. Yet instead of responding and changing course, the Chancellor just went back for more.
“The Government’s plans are deeply unfair on women. They clearly don’t understand the pressures many women are facing at the moment – especially women with children who will lose most of all."
In its analysis of the autumn statement, the Resolution Foundation called the decision on tax credits "regressive". It said that "cuts to the Child Tax Credit will mean families lose the extra £110 per child they had been expecting in 2012, and the freezing of the Working Tax Credit will reduce the incomes of working families by a further £100. Around 5.5 million families will lose as a result of the changes to Child Tax Credits with 2 million facing a double hit because of the Working Tax Credit changes.
It predicts that even in 2016 typical wages will be no higher than they were in 2001 - £1,400 below their 2009 pre-recession peak.
Gavin Kelly, Chief Executive of the Resolution Foundation, said: "Taking cash away from families on low to middle incomes is precisely the wrong thing to be doing – it hits households when they are down. Every pound taken out of their pockets is also likely to be a pound taken out of consumption in the economy".
"There are some very welcome announcements in the Autumn Statement like the doubling of childcare places for disadvantaged two year olds, and the Youth Contract – these are good ideas, they just shouldn’t be paid for by low and middle income families."