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Christian charities and MPs respond to the budget

by Cara Bentley

Christians Against Poverty, church-based charities and Christian MPs have been sharing what they make of the Chancellor's economic plan.

In Wednesday's budget, Chancellor Rishi Sunak announced grants of up to £18,000 for the hospitality sector, incentives for employers seeking to hire apprentices and the continuation of money for staff currently on furlough and the self-employed. 

The minimum wage will increase to £8.91 an hour from April and funding was announced for the arts, sport and the vaccine rollout. Potential home buyers will only need a five per cent deposit to buy a house, with the Government working with lenders to offer 95 per cent mortgages. 

Shadow work and pensions secretary, Christian and Labour MP Jonathan Reynolds told Premier he wanted to see more for 16-24-year-olds and more joined-up thinking between employment incentives and specific industries or societal needs. 

"What are we going to do to get people back to work? Not just people who've lost their jobs, but young people who have not even gone into the labour market yet, that hasn't been available to them. I didn't hear enough at all on that. 

"I don't think there was any mention of the NHS, I don't think there was any mention of social care. There was nothing on teachers and schools, when we know we have this massive educational challenge ahead of us. to mitigate the impact of young people who've missed out on so much education in the crisis. So, I was really disappointed. I felt it wasn't looking to the long-term enough."

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