Cuts burden: Women 73%|Men 27%

Commons research shows the Chancellor's changes to tax and pay will hit women almost three times as

New research by the independent House of Commons Library shows that the measures outlined in the Chancellor's Autumn Statement will be paid for almost three times more by women than by men. On Tuesday, George Osborne laid out plans to raise £2.37 billion though tax credit cuts and caps on public sector pay -- but new figures reveal that 73 per cent (£1.73 billion) of the money will come from women, and just 27 per cent (£638 million) from men.

The report, commissioned by the Labour party, reveals that the Chancellor's two-year 1 per cent cap on public sector pay rises will affect 4.6 million women and 2.6 million men, meanwhile changes to child tax credits will take £908m from women (89 per cent), whilst men will lose £112m.

On release of the findings, Labour leader Ed Miliband called this latest round of cuts by the Coalition government "the biggest attack on women in a generation."

Labour's Shadow Home Secretary Yvette Cooper said: "The Government is clearly shockingly out of touch with women's lives," and noted that Tuesday's round of austerity measures announced by Osborne are not the first with a gender bias: "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 NS has long noted the Coalition's problems with women: a recent leading article considered David Cameron's treatment of issues "from public-service reform to benefits to rape," and statistics in both the long- and short-term have shown support by women for the Conservative party to be in steep decline.

Alice Gribbin is a Teaching-Writing Fellow at the Iowa Writers' Workshop. She was formerly the editorial assistant at the New Statesman.

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The big problem for the NHS? Local government cuts

Even a U-Turn on planned cuts to the service itself will still leave the NHS under heavy pressure. 

38Degrees has uncovered a series of grisly plans for the NHS over the coming years. Among the highlights: severe cuts to frontline services at the Midland Metropolitan Hospital, including but limited to the closure of its Accident and Emergency department. Elsewhere, one of three hospitals in Leicester, Leicestershire and Rutland are to be shuttered, while there will be cuts to acute services in Suffolk and North East Essex.

These cuts come despite an additional £8bn annual cash injection into the NHS, characterised as the bare minimum needed by Simon Stevens, the head of NHS England.

The cuts are outlined in draft sustainability and transformation plans (STP) that will be approved in October before kicking off a period of wider consultation.

The problem for the NHS is twofold: although its funding remains ringfenced, healthcare inflation means that in reality, the health service requires above-inflation increases to stand still. But the second, bigger problem aren’t cuts to the NHS but to the rest of government spending, particularly local government cuts.

That has seen more pressure on hospital beds as outpatients who require further non-emergency care have nowhere to go, increasing lifestyle problems as cash-strapped councils either close or increase prices at subsidised local authority gyms, build on green space to make the best out of Britain’s booming property market, and cut other corners to manage the growing backlog of devolved cuts.

All of which means even a bigger supply of cash for the NHS than the £8bn promised at the last election – even the bonanza pledged by Vote Leave in the referendum, in fact – will still find itself disappearing down the cracks left by cuts elsewhere. 

Stephen Bush is special correspondent at the New Statesman. He usually writes about politics.