Anger as MPs get £3,500 pay rise while rest of country suffers Covid cuts and job losses
The Commons’ chiefs are going ahead with plans to spike MPs’ salaries by nearly £3,500.
The Independent Parliamentary Standards Authority has ignored calls to freeze politicians’ pay, as the nation suffers the repercussions of the Covid-19 pandemic.
However, MPs’ wages will be linked to the average rise in public sector staff as planned and the increase will exceed inflation.
IPSA said the pay rise will be based on October’s public sector year-on-year three-month growth (4.1%).
MPs will receive a £3,360 top up on their £81,932 a year salary.
Policy analyst at the TaxPayers’ Alliance, Jeremy Hutton said: “IPSA must be tin-eared if it really thinks a pay rise for MPs should be considered this year.
“Public finances are in a parlous state, furlough is coming to an end and unemployment is rising.
“A pay rise in parliament would be an insult to hardworking taxpayers who’ve had a very tough year.”
Richard Lloyd, the IPSA’s interim chairman said: “Given the huge economic uncertainties arising from the coronavirus pandemic, we don’t think it’s right to depart from this approach.”
The news comes after a recent landmark report which highlighted that UK income is the ninth most unequal of the 40 most developed countries in the globe.
1% of the UK’s top earners (around 310,000 individual people) account for more than a third of income tax paid to the government. In the 1980s, the top 1% received around 6% of the total income in the UK, this number is now 17%.
695,000 people have left company payrolls since March according to the Office for National Statistics, making it the sharpest increase in a quarterly rise since 2009, following the 2008 financial crisis.
More than a third of the UK’s employers have plans to make staff redundant over the next three months. 37% of more than 2,000 managers surveyed by YouGov said they will make staff redundant by the end of the year, following the end of the furlough scheme on October 31st.
Rishi Sunak has recently come under fire for supporting ‘only viable jobs’ and explaining that everyone, from ‘all walks of life’, has to ‘adapt and adjust to the new reality’.
Anneliese Dodds, the shadow chancellor, said: “These are viable businesses that just need support to cope with the restrictions the government has imposed on them.”
Explaining that Sunak is ‘pulling up the drawbridge at the worst possible time’.
She added: “This wasn’t by accident – it was by design. This sink or swim mentality is a throwback to the worst days of Thatcher, and just like in the 1980s, people on the lowest incomes will pay the highest price.”
Woman tragically dies in Manchester petrol station incident
Emergency services attended the scene but the woman was sadly confirmed dead
An elderly woman has died following a crash at a petrol station in Manchester.
Officers believe the woman, who was in her 70s, suffered a medical episode while at the wheel of her car when she crashed into a small brick wall.
She had been trying to drive the Nissan Micra off the forecourt of the Asda petrol station in Moston Lane, Harpurhey, at approximately 10.45am on Wednesday, March 22nd.
Emergency services attended the scene but the woman was sadly confirmed dead. Greater Manchester Police have appealed for any witnesses to help them.
A section of stretch of road, near the junction with Rochdale Road, was closed for a number of hours while emergency services dealt with the incident. Paramedics and two air ambulances were seen.
Anyone with information or on the forecourt at the time of the incident should contact police on 0161 856 4741 quoting log 1103-22/3/2023.
Information can also be reported online or by using the LiveChat function at www.gmp.police.uk. If you can’t report online, call 101 or Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.
‘Postbox to heaven’ now installed at Greater Manchester crematorium
Such a lovely idea!
A postbox allowing people to send letters to their loved ones in heaven has now been installed at a Greater Manchester crematorium.
The white and gold Royal Mail letterbox can be found at Howe Bridge crematorium in Atherton, Wigan Borough. It was the idea of nine-year-old Matilda Handy who wanted to send a letter to her late grandparents to help her cope with the grief of her loss.
The first was set-up at Gedling Crematorium, near Nottingham, and proved a popular concept with over 100 letters and cards posted within its first few weeks. Speaking to Granada Reports, Matilda’s mother Leanne, who is Gedling Crematorium’s Memorial Advisor, said: “She was four when my mum died, and never met my dad.
“Now the postbox is in place, I am so pleased that local people are using it, and taking some comfort from it, as another way of feeling connected to their loved ones.”
UK crematorium and cemetery operator, Westerleigh Group is now rolling out the postboxes across all of its sites.
Lindsey Edwardson, Site Manager at Howe Bridge Crematorium, said: “Feedback has shown that the process of writing a letter, or perhaps a birthday card, to a lost loved one has already brought therapeutic comfort to many people.
“Now, the communities in and around our crematorium can do the same thing. No address or stamps are required on any of the letters or cards. This is just another way in which we can provide emotional support to local families.”
A post on the Howe Bridge Crematorium Facebook page read: “We are proud to announce the official opening of our Letters to Heaven Post Box. Our thanks go to Alison Regan Civil Funeral Celebrant for her beautiful service to commemorate its opening.
“For all those who wish, you can post a letter to your loved ones that are no longer with us at the Post Box.”
Woman with undiagnosed brain tumour had to visit doctors nine times to get scan
Doctors told her if she had not had the surgery within a few hours or days then it could have been a different story
A woman with an undiagnosed brain tumour who was told ‘we don’t give out brain scans to 24-year-olds willy nilly’ is now campaigning for change.
Claudia Laird, from Burnley, went to see a medical professional on nine occasions as she tried to get to the bottom of why she felt so unwell. One week later, she was diagnosed with a brain tumour.
Claudia told ITV Granada Reports: “I think the initial reaction was trusting of the GP. I was in shock after, because I found out I definitely needed that brain scan.
“It was all quite quick – they weren’t sure what was on the brain at first. It was all up in the air.
“I can’t believe I went through that. We were just waiting for the doctors to tell us the outcome. It was challenging, but more so looking back on it now. At the time, you don’t know the outcome.”
Claudia was experiencing symptoms of confusion, hallucinations and fatigue. But doctors put it down to what they thought to be gastroenteritis. After discovering the tumour, Claudia had to then undergo an eight-hour operation.
Doctors told her if she had not had the surgery within a few hours or days then it could have been a different story. She said: “I was asleep all the time. My friends would call me lazy. I thought it was because I was working long hours.
“I walked into a window thinking it was a door. I spent a night in bed with my mum and dad because I was hallucinating.”
Claudia is now training to be a paediatrician, to give people the same level of care. After the difficulty she had in getting diagnosed, Claudia has decided she does not want the same mistakes to happen to someone else.
Claudia said: “We need everybody to understand the difficulty of getting that diagnosis. It took me over nine times to get that diagnosis. I went to opticians, GP and A&E just to push to say ‘I really don’t think something is right here’.
“I want to see some changes, some research, funding into brain tumours. 1% of cancer research goes into brain tumours.”
The NHS lists the symptoms of a brain tumour as:
- seizures (fits)
- persistently feeling sick (nausea), being sick (vomiting) and drowsiness.
- mental or behavioural changes, such as memory problems or changes in personality.
- progressive weakness or paralysis on one side of the body.
- vision or speech problems.