Equality Trust Response to David Cameron’s Speech at Conservative Conference

Responding to David Cameron’s speech to Conservative paty conference, Duncan Exley, Director of the Equality Trust, said:

“It is encouraging to hear David Cameron mention inequality, but the reality is that none of our political parties have outlined substantial policies to reduce it, and none of them have a record to be proud of. Today the national minimum wage was increased, but it would still take someone on that wage 342 years to earn just a year’s average pay for a FTSE 100 CEO. That is the reality of working life in Britain.

“Plans to raise the tax free allowance will benefit some of the low paid, but the lowest-paid will get nothing at all, and it will mean more is received by those at the very top. Raising the 40p threshold to £50,000 is an excellent way to increase inequality, it is a tax cut for both millionaires and those earning twice the average salary – it does not help a ‘squeezed middle’ or those on low or middle incomes at all.

“There are policies announced that may indirectly reduce inequality, including plans to tackle tax avoidance announced by George Osborne, but far too few. All politicians need to commit to an aim to reduce inequality if they genuinely want to build a fairer and better society”.