Burnley Council Leader Afrasiab Anwar column/ Chancellor’s spring budget appears to have abandoned hardworking Burnley families in favour of the richest 1%.
Build up to the Chancellor’s spring budget announcement has been overshadowed this past week by the Gary Lineker impartiality row with the BBC.
The football presenter was suspended following his tweet in support of asylum seekers, but It is commendable that he used his personal platform to express his views on such a sensitive issue. The disruption to BBC sports coverage was unfortunate but it highlighted how public figures like Lineker can play an important role in raising awareness about these issues and advocate for change.
The government should have known better than to try to take on a popular footballer. The government and the BBC have since backtracked and Gary Lineker will return to Match of the Day to host the FA Cup fixture between Manchester City and Burnley on Saturday.
The incident has raised questions about how the UK treats refugees and asylum seekers. The use of inflammatory language on the lectern used by the Prime Minister to announce his Illegal Migration Policy has also contributed to an atmosphere of intolerance and discrimination.
Since the Russian invasion of Ukraine, millions have fled the country and leaders across Europe quickly pledged their support and rightly so. It is heart-breaking to see people having to flee their homeland. However, the government seems to want to pick and choose the types of refugees it
wants to let into the UK, all in the name of scoring cheap political points rather than humanitarian reasons.
The UK has a long history of providing refuge to those fleeing persecution and conflict, and it is important that this tradition continues in a way that is both practical and humane. It is imperative to remember that people seeking asylum are often fleeing dangerous and life-threatening situations in their home countries. Government policy needs to respect the dignity and worth of all people, regardless of their nationality or circumstances. It is vital the government develops a fair and compassionate policy that prioritises the safety and well-being of all those seeking refuge.
All of this is nothing but a distraction strategy being used to deflect from issues that really matter to the public. Whilst people are worried about the cost-of-living crisis, the economy and the NHS, the government in desperation is reverting to divisive tactics by inciting hatred against the most vulnerable. A strategy designed purely to whip up hate in our communities to deflect from their own failings.
The Chancellor’s spring budget appears to have abandoned hardworking Burnley families in favour of the richest 1%. There was no mention of Levelling Up for Burnley where inflation is higher than anywhere else in the country, as living standards look set to fall further. Public sector workers also miss out, there is no Investment Zone for Lancashire and unsurprisingly no increase to funding for local government.
Lancashire and Burnley have been let down again.