Working people and our planet itself will pay for Chancellor Rishi Sunak’s budget, York Central MP Rachael Maskell says.

In a stinging attack on the budget, Ms Maskell said many working people would be left worse off than ever.

“With inflation set to run at 4 per cent, we will all see food and fuel prices soar and rents rise, and yet the Chancellor failed to mitigate these costs,” she said. “He could have taken VAT off gas and electric bills altogether to protect families against the harsh increases but failed to do this.

“After taking £6 billion out of the pockets of some of the poorest people in the country this month, today’s announcement to put £2 billion into Universal Credit goes nowhere near to compensate those hardest hit.

“The Chancellor also failed to invest in social housing, desperately needed across the city and country and there was nothing to diversify our energy sources.

“We cannot live on future promises, but needed real intervention now. “Businesses have been calling for the VAT freeze to continue and to have time to recover from the pandemic, while many people simply ask for a decent wage they can live on.

“Increasing low pay to £9.50 an hour will help the lowest paid, but when they will also be taxed for the Health and Social Care Levy from next April, and have had other benefits removed, they will continue to struggle.”

Meanwhile, there was nothing in the budget to address the biggest crisis of our times, Ms Maskell added – climate change.

“As the Prime Minister hosts the COP26 summit, mitigation for the biggest crisis facing the planet barely got a mention.

“While the rise in fuel duty was cancelled and air passenger duty cut, it will be the planet that will pay for the Budget.

“Labour has committed to invest £28bn a year for the next decade to transition to a green economy, (yet) the Chancellor was silent on how it will create the jobs and opportunities to make this change.

“When a Green New Deal, a just transition to a new economy is needed like never before, all the Chancellor could offer was to cancel a rise in fuel costs and to cut air duty, thus causing more harm, not less to our crumbling world.”