Sharon Hodgson MP

Working hard for Washington and Sunderland West.

Labour Manifesto Launch 13-04-2015

"Today we saw a Labour Party manifesto that is bold yet responsible and it really offers us the chance to build a better Britain."

Sharon Hodgson

The Labour Party today launched their 2015 General Election Manifesto, setting out what a Labour Government would do to build a better Britain.

Labour’s Manifesto starts from the idea that Britain only succeeds when working people succeed.  Today’s manifesto launch underlined Labour's commitment to fiscal responsibility, introducing a Budget Responsibility Lock which guarantees that each and every manifesto policy is costed, and paid for without a single extra penny of borrowing.  The first line of our first will be: “this budget cuts the deficit every year”.

Some of the key policies outlined today included: raising the minimum wage to more than £8 an hour by 2019, protecting tax credits in the next parliament, creating a new National Primary Childcare Service to increase affordable wrap-around childcare, pledging not to raise income tax, National Insurance or VAT, and freezing rail fares in the first year of a Labour Government while the railways are reformed to work in the best interests of passengers.

Alongside these, however, was a commitment to give more power to regions, like the North East, to help communities improve their areas without the need to wait for central Government.

Labour will end a century of centralisation, breaking the "Westminster knows best" attitude, by devolving power and decision-making to people and their local communities.  A Labour Government will unleash the power of cities and regions to drive economic growth and prosperity, encouraging local authorities to innovate to better serve their communities.  This means not imposing change, but giving control to local bodies to better run schools, health care, policing, skills, housing and transport.  Making the best use of local knowledge.

This will be done by transferring £30billion of funding to city and county regions along with new powers over economic development, skills, employment, housing, and business support.  This will include control over local transport systems so that in future, local bodies can integrate trains, buses, trams and cycling into a single network.  Labour will also enable regions to retain 100% of additional business rates raised from growth in their area.

Commenting today, Sharon Hodgson said:

"Today we saw a Labour Party manifesto that is bold yet responsible and it really offers us the chance to build a better Britain."

"From securing our nation's finances to protecting vital public services, tackling the scourge of low-pay to taking on the tax avoiders, a Labour Government will build a Britain that works for working people, standing up for the many, not just the few."

"Labour's plans to give regions more power are badly needed. Over the last few years the North East has been totally marginalised and overlooked. When the Tories speak of a recovery we know they are talking about the banks in the City of London and the businesses of the South East. We need our area to be given the attention it deserves, or else our young people won't be able to enjoy the same opportunities as those from other parts of the country, and our services will never be good as the ones we deserve. We need a Government that understands the North East, and will act decisively to improve the lives of the people who live here."

"Labour's new plans would finally give local authorities the ability to plan long-term, on the basis of what communities actually need, not just what someone in Westminster thinks they need, and I also think giving councils the power to require particular types of shops to apply for planning permission is good news. Local areas want a say in their own High Streets, and giving them these powers will hopefully mean less payday lenders taking over and more small businesses springing up, catering for the real needs of the local community."

"Also, as someone who has campaigned for a long time on extending the Metro to Washington, I am pleased to see Labour’s plan to give regions more power over transport. This will enable us to integrate our transport network to make sure it serves the best interest of all the people that use it, and it will hopefully make getting around that much easier for us all."

"Today's manifesto has underlined Labour's commitment to making this country once again work in the interests of working people. Protecting what is most valuable to us, investing in our future, and tackling head-on the biggest challenges we face today. Giving more power to us in the North East is one way of doing that, and I believe it will give us the chance to build a real recovery for the many, that we can all enjoy."


Download a copy of the Labour Party 2015 manifesto here >

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