Norman Lamb MP: An ‘age tax’ would ‘protect young people who are already squeezed’

Norman Lamb MP: An ‘age tax’ would ‘protect young people who are already squeezed’

Monday, November 12, 2018

Liberal Democrat Norman Lamb has said that an “age tax” is an option because it “protects young people” from additional costs.

Health Secretary Matt Hancock has said that he was “attracted” to a new tax on over 40-year-olds to deal with a hole in social care spending.

It is based on a German model where over 40s pay 2.5% of their wages towards the costs social care.

Mr Lamb, a former Health Minister told talkRADIO’s Eamonn Holmes: “It is absolutely one of the options we need to look at. The bottom line is that if we are to solve this crisis, and it is a crisis, then we need to pay more in tax.

“The question is about how you can do that in a fair way and I think one attraction of this, like a scheme in Japan, is that it protects younger people who are really squeezed at the moment.

“They are facing pressures of tuition fees, being unable to buy their own homes, and renting at high costs.

“To impose an additional burden on them, I think many people would think that was unfair.

If it is from the age of 40, and provided that it is done in a progressive way, in other words the people with more money paying more, those should be the broadest shoulders carrying the heaviest burden.

“I think it is an option that we should consider.”


'In the national interest' 

However, Mr Lamb said that proposing any new tax can be “unpopular”.

“It is very difficult proposing a new tax and there is a tendency for other parties to come down on you from a great height,” he said.

“Parties run away with this because they don’t want to deal with the unpopularity and nothing happens.

“I think we have to work together in the national interest.”