Labour Wants Parliament Recalled Two Weeks Early To Debate Energy Bill Freeze
Keir Starmer talked to building society staff in Swindon about the cost of living crisis. (Alamy)
Labour has called on the government to bring MPs back two weeks early from summer recess so that they can debate the party’s plan to freeze energy bills before the next price cap is announced.
In a letter to the Prime Minister and both Conservative leadership candidates, the party demanded that Parliament be resumed on 22 August, rather than on 5 September as planned.
Labour wants MPs to debate new proposals, announced by the party earlier this week, which would see the energy price cap frozen at its current level of £1,971 for the next six months.
“Across Britain, people are having to make unthinkable choices about how to pay their bills, causing endless worry for households and businesses,” Thangam Debbonaire MP, shadow leader of the Commons, wrote.
“That is why I am writing to you today to urge you to bring Parliament back early on Monday 22 August so that we can freeze the energy price cap now ahead of winter.”
She added that the next energy price cap, due to be announced by Ofgem on 26 August, was likely to “send households into a further spiral of worry” and would result in “another shock for our economy".
“With businesses and households on the brink, we cannot wait to act,” she said.
“Families deserve a government that is on their side, and is ready to take the action needed now to meet the scale of this national emergency. The government must adopt Labour’s plan and take action to freeze the price cap now.”
Labour claims its energy price freeze would mean families "wouldn't pay a penny more" than they currently are and is a more efficient proposal than the government's support package.
They hope to fund the freeze by diverting the costs of the government's planned £400 rebate, which will go to all households in the autumn, and the additional financial support schemes worth £1,200 to vulnerable households.
Further money would also be raised via the 5 per cent Energy Profits Levy – known most commonly as the windfall tax – on energy firms.
The party hopes the proposals will help ease the UK’s cost of living crisis, with energy bills expected to reach up to £4,200 by January next year and the price of many basic essentials set to soar.
On Wednesday new figures from the Office for National Statistics (ONS) showed that inflation hit 10.1 per cent last month, the biggest jump in the cost of living since February 1982.
The ONS also shared on Thursday that wages fell by 3 per cent on the year for the months between April and June because of spiralling prices.
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