Commenting on the Chancellor's Spring Statement, Dr Wanda Wyporska of The Equality Trust said:
"The slight improvement in the UK's overall public finances, while welcome, has come at far too high a price. We have too many people that are struggling to survive in this country, from rising homelessness to record high food bank use and from very low and insecure wages to diminishing social security support, and all amidst an inflation rate of 3% and increasingly threadbare public services. Meanwhile, company bosses and even university vice-chancellors are taking home salaries and bonuses the size of lottery wins.
In a country where the richest 1,000 people own more wealth than the poorest 40% of households put together, today's Spring Statement was a chance to set a course towards a fairer UK. The vast gap in this country between rich and poor is damaging our social fabric. The Chancellor had the chance, today, to start repairing that fabric but he chose not to."
The Equality Trust is the national charity that campaigns to improve quality of life in the UK by reducing economic and social inequality. The UK is one of the most unequal countries in the developed world and evidence shows that this causes far worse rates of health and social problems than those found in more equal countries, including: poorer mental and physical health, higher violent crime, worse educational outcomes and lower levels of trust. Inequality affects us all but it is not inevitable. Together we can fix it.