PM accused of introducing new ‘poll tax’ on Scottish workers to pay for social care reforms
Boris Johnson is forcing Scottish workers to pay for social care reforms in England via his own “poll tax”, the SNP has claimed.
The Prime Minister told MPs the proposed health and social care levy, based on a 1.25 percentage point increase in National Insurance contributions, would see money directed to support services in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland.
He said the three nations would “benefit from an extra £2.2 billion a year”, adding: “This is about 15% more than they would contribute through the levy, it will create a union dividend of £300 million.”
But SNP Westminster leader Ian Blackford (pictured) blasted the policy during fiery exchanges in the House of Commons.
He said: “By raising this levy across the UK, the Tories are taxing Scottish workers twice – forcing them to pay the bill for social care in England as well as at home in Scotland.
“This is the Prime Minister’s poll tax on Scottish workers to pay for English social care.
“Scottish people remember that it is this Prime Minister who said, ‘a pound spent in Croydon is of much more value to the country than a pound spent in Strathclyde’.”
Mr Johnson said the NHS is a “UK institution”, adding: “He is completely wrong in what he says about those who pay this tax. The burden falls most heavily on those who have the broadest shoulders, as it should.
“There is a massive union dividend of £300 million across the whole of the United Kingdom and the whole of the UK will find more money for health and social care.”
In 1990, riots broke out after then Conservative prime minister Margaret Thatcher attempted to reform council financing via the community charge – dubbed the poll tax.
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