Sedgefield constituency is feeling the cost-of-living crisis. Local people say "the situation has got worse" since the Tory-led coalition government came to power. Phil Wilson believes "in times of austerity, it is the most vulnerable members of society who need protecting the most".
The Sedgefield constituency and the cost-of-living crisis feature in an article published yesterday in The Northern Echo.
The article notes that "few voters claimed to feel better off" under the coalition government. Freda Dovaston who runs Sedgefield's Village Style is quoted as saying "If the economy has grown it has come at a cost and that cost is lower wages and zero hour contracts. People on zero hour contracts can't get credit or mortgages and have no security. I doubt they feel better off".
Local lawyer Robert Gilbert is quoted: "Most of the new jobs are zero hour contracts anyway. I think the situation has got worse since this Government came in, especially with all the attacks on benefits for the needy".
A local grandmother is reported to say: "I definitely don't feel better off. I think this Government is robbing Peter to pay Paul".
In response, Phil Wilson, Labour's candidate running for re-election in Sedgefield, says: "I have fought for jobs for local people, worked to achieve fairer decisions on public and school transport, raised the issue of irresponsible private landlords and fought against Eon's plans for a massive wind farm near Bradbury, Mordon and Chilton. I want to see more homes for local families but this needs to be achieved in a sustainable way. That is why I have campaigned against unsustainable housing developments in Middleton St. George and Sedgefield. In times of austerity, it is the most vulnerable members of society who need protecting the most. That is why a Labour Government will scrap the costly and failing Bedroom Tax and bring an end to draconian targets for benefit sanctions".
Read the full The Northern Echo article here ["Feeling the pinch," 28 April 2015].