MP calls for tax breaks and help for the ‘underdog’
By Vivienne Russell | 30 July 2012
Charities and small businesses should be given tax breaks and bright but disadvantaged youngsters sponsored through private school, a Conservative MP has suggested.
In a pamphlet, published by the Centre for Policy Studies think-tank today, Dominic Raab set out ten policies that he said would widen opportunity and improve social mobility. They included VAT breaks for charities that work with disadvantaged youngsters, and National Insurance and business rate exemptions for very small business employers (employing up to ten staff).
Other suggestions included giving social housing tenants an equity stake in their homes, helping talented children to attend independent schools and setting up schools staffed by military veterans in deprived areas.
Raab’s report, called Unleashing the British underdog: ten bets on the little guy, said the cost of implementing the proposals was £1.6bn a year, but argued that this would be more than covered by a range of regulatory and bureaucratic reforms.
‘The Conservative vision of fairness should focus on backing the “underdog” – people who work hard to compete on merit, overcome vested interests and succeed against the odds,’ Raab said.
The party should stand up for the ‘little guy’, he added, whether in business, the professions or any other walk of life. ‘It ought to be the party that breaks down glass ceilings and monopolistic vested interests. Above all, this agenda ought to appeal to those who prize the work ethic as a value that transcends class, ethnicity, faith and other social differences.’