Labour manifesto makes green cities, wages, and farming pledges

A commitment to build a 'new generation' of garden cities is included in the Labour Party's election manifesto, launched on 13 April.

Labour leader Ed Milliband
Labour leader Ed Milliband

The manifesto which sets out Labour's main policy pledges says the party would make sure that at least 200,000 homes a year get built by 2020 - "almost double the current level".

The manifesto also says that, "to boost the housing we need, we will start to build a new generation of garden cities".

On the rural economy. the manifesto states: "We want to create a world-leading food, farm and fisheries sector that creates better paid jobs and apprenticeships across the rural economy.

It adds: "We will put in place a long-term strategy for the sector, promote the best of British produce, and expand the role of the supermarket watchdog to support the growth of the sector, and protect food producers from unfair practices by the major supermarkets."

Other pledges include:

  • A £2.5bn fund for the NHS paid for largely by a mansion tax on properties valued at over £2m
  • Twenty-five hours of childcare for working parents of three and four-year olds and a new legal right to before and after-school assistance, paid for by a rise in bank levy
  • Freezing gas and electricity bills until 2017, so they can only fall not rise
  • Banning zero-hour contracts and raising the minimum wage to £8
  • Scrapping winter fuel payments for the richest pensioners, capping child benefit rises and cutting ministers' pay by five per cent
  • A 50p tax rate on incomes over £150,000 a year and abolishing non-dom status.
  • Rises in VAT and national insurance ruled out
  • A cut in tuition fees from £9,000 to £6,000
  • Double paternity leave from two to four weeks and increase paternity pay by more than £100 a week
  • Ensure at least 200,000 new homes a year are built by 2020, with first priority for local first-time buyers
  • End exploitative zero-hours contracts.
  • Continue to support the construction of High Speed Two, but keep costs down.
  • Introduce a new long-term funding policy framework for science and innovation, providing the stability and continuity that our companies and research institutes need to succeed.

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