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New Clause.; — (Reduction of Purchase Tax from Five or Ten per Cent. to One per Cent.)

Part of Orders of the Day — Finance Bill – in the House of Commons at 12:00 am on 3rd July 1957.

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Photo of Mr Barnett Janner Mr Barnett Janner , Leicester North West 12:00 am, 3rd July 1957

Has it occurred to the Economic Secretary that we cannot talk about the figures to which he referred in a kind of poetic vacuum? We are asking for something which affects the vast majority of economists in this country—the housewives. Of all the economists the one who has the most practical job is the housewife. She has to consider how to make both ends meet from the sum which arrives in her hands from her work, or from the work of her husband and herself.

The Economic Secretary has not realised that the Government have placed such an imposition on the householders recently that it will be literally impossible for them, in consequence of the rise of rent, to maintain their standard of living in their homes and, at the same time, to provide themselves with the necessities of life. Among those necessities of life are such domestic utensils as are being discussed. Does the right hon. Gentleman know, or has he inquired, what the average householder today is having to put up with in the way of the threats and demands for higher rents? Does he realise that hundreds of thousands, possibly millions, of notices have gone out already, telling average householders that their statutory tenancies or their contractual tenancies are ending and that in the immediate future, in respect of houses which are not controlled—