On Wednesday the Conservative Government unveiled its 2017 Budget. We took the time to take a look inside and pinpoint three elements that will affect young people in Britain, separating them into three key points.
Less choice, longer hours
A brand new educational qualification called T-Levels will see an investment of £500 million. Aimed at improving and simplifying the process of vocational training in the United Kingdom, T-Levels will replace what were 13,000 individual courses and slim them down to just 15 qualifications, including engineering, accounting and marketing. This dramatic simplification has resulted in diminished options for students looking to do a vocational degree.
Furthermore, from 2017 onwards the amount of training hours for current 16- to 19-year-old students will up by 50 per cent, according to Philip Hammond. This is to better prepare them for a global economy with extra knowledge accrued from the extended training sessions.
Tax on honest Sins
Under the new budget, smoking and drinking will become significantly more expensive with an increase in so-called Sin Taxes. A new excise duty is being introduced on cigarettes, packets of tobacco and alcohol. As a result, the price of a packet of twenty cigarettes from six in the evening on Wednesday night has gone up by thirty-five pence, whilst the cost of a standard packet of thirty-gram tobacco has risen by forty-two pence.
As regards alcohol, the price of all alcohols has gone up with a two pence increase in the cost of a pint of beer, a ten pence rise in the cost of a bottle of wine and a staggering thirty-six pence hike for a bottle of whisky.
Though many young people neither drink or smoke, a significant number still do and, as a consequence of this budget, are gradually being priced out of a couple of basic liberties.
There is a little window of good news however. The Lifetime Individual Savings Account or LISA for short is being introduced for 18- to 40-year-olds. Up to £4,000 a year can be saved and the Government will award a 25 per cent bonus if the money is used to buy a house or fund a pension; useful for the young professional looking to get on the property ladder.
As positive as this may be however, it is only a small light in a room full of shadows. The Conservative Spring Budget was never going to be a saviour to the disaffected youth of Brexit Britain. In reality it has given them less choice, less financial manoeuvrability and more work to do in rebuilding their future.