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Labour’s manifesto leaked

The Telegraph got their hands on a leaked copy of an early draft of the Labour manifesto. Many are already comparing it to Foot’s famous 1983 manifesto, dubbed the longest suicide note in history. There are, however, some sections that may placate the party’s moderates. Below are some of the key points.

Brexit

  • Leaving the EU without a deal formally ruled out, and dubbed the ‘worst possible option’.
  • The rights of EU nationals in the UK to be ‘immediately guaranteed’ if the party wins the election.
  • The manifesto includes a guarantee of a ‘meaningful vote’ on a final Brexit deal in parliament. As leaving with no deal is ruled out, the manifesto says that a rejection will lead to further negotiations, during a transitional period.
  • EU legislation on workers and consumers rights, as well as environmental protections and equality law, will be retained after Brexit.

Migration

  • There is no commitment to reduce immigration, and the prospect of a cap or target figure is dismissed.
  • Restrictions on migrants from outside the EU to be relaxed.
  • Minimum income rules for the partners of non-EU migrants to be scrapped, making it easier for them to come to the UK.

Education

  • University tuition fees to be abolished, and free university tuition is to be re-introduced
  • A National Education Service to be introduced to help implement reforms (although the purpose and scope of such a service is not entirely clear)
  • 30 hours of free child care for all two year olds, and plans for one year olds to receive free child care in the future
  • Teachers to be allowed to take ‘sabbaticals’ and ‘placements within industry’, in a system similar to some of those used- and much criticised- in other European countries.
  • Class sizes to be capped at 30 for all five to seven year olds, and VAT exceptions on private and public school fees to be scrapped
  • Key stage one and two SATs tests to be reviewed.

Tax

  • People earning more than £80,000 and businesses to be hit with major tax rises to pay for Labour’s multi-billion-pound spending spree. John McDonnell, shadow chancellor, had previously promised only ‘modest’ tax increases.
  • Income tax to remain the same or fall for 95 per cent of taxpayers, as will the standard rate of VAT and personal national insurance contributions.
  • “Large” companies will be told to pay “a little more” in corporation tax to help fund spending on schools and investment.

Workers rights and pay

  • Firms being paid from public money to be required have a pay ratio between the best and worst paid employees of no more than 20:1, meaning a CEO can’t earn more than twenty times as much as the lowest paid employee.
  • The same protections for part-time or temporary jobs as full-time workers.
  • Unpaid internships to be banned, a cap on public sector pay rises will be scrapped and “double pay paternity leave" for the first month will be introduced.
  • The national minimum wage to rise to at least £10 per hour by 2020,

Nuclear weapons and the military

  • The manifesto commits to multilateralism, and the eventual scrapping of Trident. As is Labour's policy, the manifesto does support renewal of the current system.
  • “Labour supports the renewal of the Trident submarine system. 

"As a nuclear armed power, our country has a responsibility to fulfil our international obligations under the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty. 

"Labour will lead multilateral efforts with international partners and the UN to create a nuclear free world."

  • The army will only be deployed ‘if all other options have been exhausted’
  • 2% NATO spending commitment to be met. 

Justice

  • Full inquiries into Orgreave, the blood contamination scandal and blacklisting of workers.
  • All papers relating to the 1973 conviction of the “Shrewsbury 24” - building workers prosecuted for picketing - to be released.
  • Prisons are described as a “place of last resort”
  • 3,000 more prison officers to be hired
  • The Human Rights Act to be retained.

Health and Social Care

  • £6 billion in NHS funding, paid for by extra taxes on the top 5 per cent of earners as well as increasing tax on private medical insurance.
  • The NHS pay cap to be scrapped.
  • Privatisation and outsourcing to be reversed in the NHS.
  • A new legal duty to be introduced, meaning the Secretary of State for Health and NHS England have to ensure that excess private profits are not made out of the NHS at the expense of patient care.
  • An extra £8 billion pledged to social care over the next 5 years, including £1 billion in the first year.
  • A a Tobacco Control Plan, which will aim to cut smoking among LGBT and ethnic minority communities, as well as child smokers and people with poor mental health.

Transport and infrastructure

  • Railways to be renationalised, rail fares frozen and HS2 to be extended to Scotland.
  • Driver-only operated trains to be banned.
  • Municipal bus companies to be created, replacing privately owned companies and routes.
  • A “Crossrail of the north” to be built, along with port developments in Southampton, Avonmouth, Liverpool, Hull and Immingham.
  • Roads including the A1, Severn Bridge and A30 to be given “urgent consideration”.
  • Fracking to be banned.

Constitution and Scottish independence 

  • The House of Lords to be scrapped and replaced with an elected second chamber
  • Voting age to be reduced to 16
  • A new constitutional settlement for the four parts of the United Kingdom.
  • A Constitutional Convention to extend devolution
  • A Minister for England to be created to work with the Secretaries of State for Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland.
  • Scottish independence opposed, along with a second independence referendum.

Environment and animal welfare 

  • Labour to end the badger cull and keep in place a ban on fox hunting.
  • The establishment of water conservation areas called ‘blue belts’, styled after green belts. e
  • Plastic bottle deposit schemes to be established along with targets to cut reduce food waste by working with manufacturers.
  • An end to end the third-party sale of puppies, a “total ban on ivory trading” and a ban on wild animals in circuses.

Benefits

  • The bedroom tax to be reversed.
  • Housing benefit for under 21s to be re-introduced.
  • Education and Support Allowance (ESA) to increase by £30 a week.
  • Carers’ allowance to be increased by £11 to the same level as Jobseekers Allowance, and Labour would end benefits reassessments for people with severe long-term conditions.

Diversity and the media

  • The second part of the Leveson inquiry into alleged corrupt dealings between the press and the police to go ahead
  • Part one of the Leveson inquiry – which recommended state backed regulation of the press – will be implemented.
  • A national review into local media
  • Improved diversity on and off screen, working with the film industry and public service.

Borrowing

  • A National Investment Bank financed with an injection of initial public capital which will be leveraged using additional private sector finance to be formed to fund Labour’s spending plans that will borrow £250billion over the next decade.
  • Labour to take advantage of near-record low interest rates to invest £250 billion over ten years to invest in upgrading infrastructure.

Social, non-discrimination and miscellaneous 

  • An end to racism and discrimination against Gypsy, Roma and Traveller communities. The right to lead a nomadic way of life to be protected.
  • Labour ‘is acting on the recommendations’ of a report it commissioned into anti-Semitism within the party.
  • Legislation to be introduced limiting high street bank branches.
  • The Freedom of Information Act to be extended to include private companies that run public services.
  • Loans to be provided at 0 per cent interest for environmentally-friendly home improvements
  • A review to be undertaken into ways of slowing the number of pub closures.

"Editor in Chief, Great British Politics.
Political commentator. Ba (Hons) Modern History and Politics. Spent a lot of time on the campaign trail, for various parties. Spent a lot of time working for charities and NGOs. In search of a new picture."

- Adam Hyde
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