STUC brands the Queen’s Speech as a Tory election stunt and a complete failure to meet the challenges of poverty, inequality and climate change
STUC General Secretary Grahame Smith said: “These measures fail to address the important challenges of our time. They will increase inequality rather than reduce it. They will punish vulnerable citizens rather than support them. They will further undermine democracy rather than enhance it.
“New requirements for voters to bring ID in the form of passports or drivers licenses will undoubtably disenfranchise voters. People on low incomes will feel the brunt of this the most, with current passports costing over £75. This is a deliberate attack on working class voters.
“New environmental targets may sound good but are no use without real action to actually reduce carbon emissions and protect those most at risk from climate change. Crucially, despite 10 years of austerity, the speech contains nothing to transform the Tories failing economic model.
“What we need is a Queen’s Speech that prioritises increased investment and public intervention to tackle the climate emergency and ensure a Just Transition; the reform of our benefit system and a recognition that both Universal Credit and our housing system are in crisis; action to increase the minimum wage to a real leaving wage now, not some time in the future; and freedom for unions to organise and bargain to raise living standards and reduce inequality.
On the plans for rail, Grahame Smith said: “Scrapping the rail franchise system is an admission of the failure of privatisation. What we need is public ownership, not a different model of private ownership that has failed travellers and rail workers. It would be totally unacceptable if these proposals removed the opportunity under the current franchise system for the Scottish Parliament to approve a public ownership model.”
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