Happy City’s Spring Statement 2018

As the government releases their Spring Statement on the state of the economy, we’ve put together our own set of priorities for an economy that allows everyone to truly thrive.

What do you think the Chancellor, shadow Chancellor and other politicians should prioritise for a wellbeing economy that puts people first? We’d love to hear from you in comments, or tweet us @happycityuk using the hashtag #InvestIn. You can also find out more about our #InvestIn Campaign here.

Our 7 Priorities for a thriving economy

  1. A one planet budget. Let’s #investin developing green energy, using fewer  natural resources and ensuring cleaner air for people now AND in the future
  2. A one nation budget. Let’s #investin everyone’s basic needs, and a society where the last thing we grow is the gap between the haves and have nots
  3. An economy for people. Let’s #investin in secure, fairly paid work that supports thriving communities , rather than jobs that create great wealth for the few
  4. Education for life. Let’s #investin our capacity to learn, from cradle to grave and from Perth to Penzance. Let’s help educate the nation in how to live long, healthy and happy lives in communities that care
  5. Cherishing our health service. Let’s #investin the jewel in our public crown, and ensure everyone can benefit from our NHS to live healthy fulfilled lives
  6. Great places to live. Let’s #investin our local places and in local housing, transport and public spaces that make us proud to call them home
  7. Communities that care. Let’s #investin in ending the epidemic of social isolation and loneliness, by supporting cultural, sporting and community action that brings us together and help us belong.

Can we afford to pay for this? The real question is, can we afford not to?

How about cutting the subsidies for fossil fuel industries and arms sales to unstable regimes around the world? £4.8bn has been provided to oil, gas and coal companies under an export scheme administered by UK Export Finance, a Government agency, since 2010. Green energy projects, on the other hand, have received just £39m in since 2012 when the first such agreement for renewables was struck. The Stockholm International Peace Research Institute estimates that the government provides between £104–£142 million annually in specific, identifiable subsides for arms exports.

How about taxing casino banking and closing loopholes that encourage global corporations and billionaires to ‘hide’ their money offshore? The super-rich are hiding trillions of dollars offshore. Research estimates that between 2010 and 2015 the amount of wealth in tax havens has increased over 25%, and there has never been as much money held offshore as there is today.

How about ending the outsourcing of public services to companies who make huge profits from them? Private companies with contracts to build and run NHS hospitals made an estimated pre-tax profits of £831m between 2010 and 2015. This is enough to have reduced deficits in UK NHS hospitals by one quarter in the same period.

Or a radically different banking system that ‘creates money’ to #investin people, jobs and communities, rather than just creating money to bail out banks? The government’s bailout of the banks peaked at more than £1 trillion according to the National Audit Office.

How would YOU pay for a better world?

Dear Mr Chancellor….  

If you like what Mabel has to say, share it on social media and help us start a debate about a wellbeing budget for our country