Jeremy Corbyn: Labour to 'clamp down' on tax-dodging, and end the 'hostile environment' towards disabled people

Jeremy Corbyn: Labour to 'clamp down' on tax-dodging, and end the 'hostile environment' towards disabled people

Wednesday, September 26, 2018

Labour Leader Jeremy Corbyn has said that Labour was providing “a radical plan to transform our country” and end the “hostile environment” created by the Conservative Government.

Speaking at the Labour Party Conference in Liverpool, Mr Corbyn concentrated addressing claims of antisemitism within the party, keeping “all options open” for Brexit and attacked Donald Trump’s “aggressive” foreign policy.

Here is a round-up for the Labour leader’s keynote speech.

 

Antisemitism

The Labour leader hit out at “Tory hypocrites” while addressing the issue of antisemitism and said that the Labour Party would “work with Jewish communities to eradicate antisemitism”.

Corbyn said: “The next Labour government will guarantee whatever support necessary to ensure the security of Jewish community centres and places of worship, as we will for any other community experiencing hateful behaviour and physical attacks.

“We will work with Jewish communities to eradicate antisemitism, both from our party and wider society.

Mr Corbyn went on to describe members of the Conservative Party as “hypocrites” for attacking the Labour Party over antisemitism, while “endorsing” Hungary’s Prime Minister Viktor Orban.

Mr Corbyn said: “So conference, we won’t accept it when we’re attacked by Tory hypocrites who accuse us of antisemitism one day, then endorse Viktor Orban’s hard right government the next.

“Or when they say we are racist, while they work to create a hostile environment for all migrant communities.”

Campaign groups have raised concern about Mr Orban about “anti-Semitic undertones” in his campaign, for comments about Muslims, and the politician’s attitude towards migrants.

 

Social care

Mr Corbyn marked the NHS’s 70th anniversary as “Labour’s proudest creation” but said that the Conservative Government had pushed it “into crisis”.

He said: “We all contribute through our taxes so that it’s there for all whenever we need it.

“But this Conservative Government has pushed our NHS into crisis, with more people waiting longer in A&E and to see a GP and over four million people on hospital waiting lists.

“And there is a mental health crisis too, causing real pain and anguish.”

He added: “And then there’s the scandal of the Tories’ £6 billion cuts to social care, leaving 400,000 fewer older people receiving care.

“Too many of our older people condemned to live alone and isolated, often ending up at A&E through neglect, then unable to leave hospital because it’s not safe for them.”

 

Disability rights

The Conservative Government had created a “hostile environment” for disabled people, the Labour leader told the Party Conference.

He said: “Hundreds of people write to me about it every week, people like Richard who says: “My wife was diagnosed with progressive multiple sclerosis 20 years ago. A few months ago we were told that she needed to reapply for Personal Independence Payments. She had an assessment by someone who wasn't medically trained, we have now been told that all her benefit will be stopped.”

Mr Corbyn added that Labour would put “fairness and humanity” back into public services like the NHS.

 

Brexit

Mr Corbyn said Labour’s plan would be made “against the backdrop” of Brexit, and that “time was running out for a deal”.

He said: “Labour respects the decision of the British people in the referendum. But no one can respect the conduct of the government since that vote took place.”

He added: “Theresa May used to say that ‘no deal is better than a bad deal’. Yet now, after two years of botched negotiations she is threatening the country with just that choice: a bad deal or no deal.

“That is a threat to our whole economy, especially our manufacturing industry and to tens of thousands of skilled jobs here in Britain.

“Now time is running out. Companies are losing patience.”

The Labour leader said the party would “vote against the Chequers plan” as it stands and oppose a no-deal Brexit describing it as a “national disaster”.

He said: “That is why if Parliament votes down a Tory deal or the government fails to reach any deal at all we would press for a General Election.

“Failing that, all options are on the table.”

 

Economy and business

The Labour leader also used his speech to attack “tax-dodging” billionaires, saying that the party would “clamp down” on the practice.

Mr Corbyn said: “Together, we are going to change Britain. You may have noticed that not everyone is entirely happy about all this.

“It turns out that the billionaires who own the bulk of the British press don’t like us one little bit.

“Now it could be because we’re going to clamp down on tax dodging. Or it may be because we don’t fawn over them at white tie dinners and cocktail parties.”

Mr Corbyn also pushed for nationalisation, describing the prison service as on the "brink of meltdown", saying that Labour would end it.

The Labour leader said: “The Birmingham prison run by G4S had to be brought back into public ownership after the Chief Inspector of Prisons described it as the worst he had ever visited.

“The privatised probation service is on the brink of meltdown."

He added: “On the railways, the East Coast franchise has collapsed for the third time in a decade, bailed out by taxpayers yet again.

“You get on a train at Kings Cross and you never know who will be running it by the time you get to Edinburgh.”

 

Climate Change

Mr Corbyn said there was “no bigger threat facing humanity” than climate change, and that Labour would aim to achieve “a 60% reduction in emissions by 2030”.

He added: “Labour will kick-start a Green Jobs Revolution that will help tackle climate change, provide sustainable energy for the future and create skilled jobs in every nation and region of the UK.”

 

Donald Trump

Mr Corbyn told the Labour Party Conference that the UK’s foreign policy was “no longer sustainable”.

He said: “When President Trump takes the US out of the Paris accords, tries to scrap the Iran nuclear deal, moves the US embassy to Jerusalem and pursues aggressive nationalism and trade wars - he is turning his back on international cooperation and even international law.

“We need a British government that can not only keep the country safe, but can also speak out for democratic values and human rights.”