This has been a tough week for households up and down the country. Working families are once again suffering the consequences of the Tories’ poor decision making.
Half a million more families are set to be plunged into fuel poverty from next month due to the increase to the energy price cap. People will face the impossible choice between overpriced heating and overpriced eating this winter.
Ministers are quick to highlight that the current energy crisis is global. But it is undeniable that this Government have made the situation in the UK far worse with their economically questionable and morally reprehensible choices.
Over 800,000 people have seen their energy supplier go bust since Wednesday. The Tories were warned of this. The Shadow Chancellor drew attention to the likelihood of a fuel crisis back in 2019, and Ofgem advised about the lack of long-term reform of the broken energy market months ago.
I asked the Leader of the House why his Government chose to ignore these warnings. It is inexcusable for the Tories to fail to act at the expense of people across the UK.
This energy price hike is yet another hit to working families on top of the Government’s Universal Credit cut; a cut that will push 200,000 more children into poverty. This is a cruel choice made by Tories forcing the British public to bear the brunt of their failures. The last Labour government took nearly 1 million children out of poverty- an example of what good governments do when they make good choices.
Energy prices, childcare, rents, taxes, fuel, rail fares and food prices are all rising. On 21st September, Labour used an Opposition Day debate to question the Government on this. You can watch the Shadow Chief Secretary to the Treasury, Bridget Phillipson MP, make her speech on this here.
It was disappointing- although unsurprising- that the Government had no answers to offer.
The Tories are completely out of touch with the financial strain their poor choices are causing, and I urge them to reconsider placing this burden on working people. Labour will continue to fight for fair pricing and good choices for the British public.
Business Questions will return on Thursday 21st October.