Talking to the BBC, the chancellor said that the top 10 per cent of earners would be hit hardest but everyone was making a contribution to cutting the deficit. The “the path to economic ruin” lay ahead unless the deficit was tackled, said Osbourne.
However, Labour has called the £81bn Spending Review cuts a “reckless gamble” with the economy and Shadow Chancellor Alan Johnson said: “There is great cruelty in this and great unfairness being introduced into our society,”
Soon after Osbourne’s speech yesterday, demonstrators gathered outside Downing Street to protest against the spending cuts, which the TUC has said will have a devastating social impact.
Yesterday’s Spending Review represented the biggest cuts since the 1970s, according to the Institute for Fiscal Studies. But how will you be affected?
The Spending Review 2010: Key points
If you’re a commuter
Train fares will rise 24 per cent between 2012 and 2015. This could mean £600 more on an annual travel bill.
If you pay Council Tax
Council tax has been frozen for two years.
If you get welfare support
An annual cap has been introduced on sickness benefit which will now be paid for only one year.
If you’re under 35 then you will only be able to claim housing benefit for a single room in a shared house rather than a whole flat.
High-earning families will lose their child benefits.
Working tax credit has been frozen for three years and eligibility requirements will change.
Social housing tenants will be paying 80 per cent of the market rent, a sharp increase.
If you get ill
The NHS budget will increase over the next four years the NHS from £104bn to £114bn, a rise of 0.4 per cent. However, efficiency savings of £20 billion are already planned. Bureaucracy will be cut and bonuses to managers ended.
If you use local services
Funding to local councils will be slashed by 7.1 per cent, but ring-fencing of all local government revenue grants will end from April next year, except for simplified schools grants and a public health grant. Expect to see libraries and leisure centres disappear.
If you can’t wait to retire
The state pension age will rise from 60 to 66 by 2020. Public sector workers will have to pay more into their pension fund every month.
If you’re worried about crime
Police spending will fall by 4 per cent each year of the spending settlement. UK Border Agency budget will also be cut by 20 per cent. However, counter-terrorism policing will be protected.
If you’re wondering about defence
There will be an 8% cut in defence spending over the period of the spending review.