This Government is committed to supporting families at every stage of their lives – ensuring parents have access to high quality, affordable childcare is a priority.
In our 2015 manifesto we committed to doubling the amount of free childcare for working parents to 30 hours a week – the biggest ever investment in free childcare.
And in just a few months’ time, a year ahead of schedule, thousands of families will begin to benefit from this commitment, with £13 million going directly to eight local councils across the country.
These councils will be supported by 25 Early Innovators nationwide, which will look at how the offer works in specific circumstances, including for children with Special Educational Needs and Disabilities, and address a number of potential difficulties.
Hundreds of families from Hertfordshire, Newham, Northumberland, Portsmouth, Staffordshire, Swindon, Wigan or York, from September this year you will start receive 30 hours of free childcare a week.
By doubling free childcare, we are continuing to deliver on the commitments we made to the British people - to support working people and to deliver security for working families.
Investing in childcare, by the numbers:
- More than £1 billion extra per year by 2019-20 to fund the extension of the free childcare entitlement.
- From 2017, this investment will fund 30 hours of free childcare for working families with 3 and 4 year olds, and support £10,000 of childcare costs tax-free.
- To make this affordable, it will be available to parents working more than 16 hours a week and with incomes of less than £100,000.
- The Department for Education will also be piloting a new contract with councils, and consulting on a fairer funding formula for the early years, to help ensure that local authorities are passing the money on to providers, and that providers are given a fair rate.
New figures show that the number of new homes being registered across the UK is at its highest level since 2007.
By working closely with housebuilders, we’re ensuring that they have the skills needed to build even more homes that hard-working people want. Other initiatives such as Help to Buy have enabled nearly 270,000 people to buy since 2010.
All of this is good news for anyone who works hard and aspires to own their own home.
Will you be watching the first hustings of the London Mayoral campaign, taking place tonight?
If you’re tweeting during the event, the hashtag is #londontomorrow – and here are some facts that everyone needs to know:
- Zac Goldsmith has an Action Plan for Greater London: more homes, better transport, cleaner air and safer streets – all delivered without raising Mayoral council tax.
- If elected, Zac will build on Boris’s record – and work with Government to get a good deal for Greater London – something he has done time and time again as MP for Richmond Park and North Kingston.
- Zac Goldsmith’s record of delivery is recognised by his constituents. Zac won his seat from the Lib Dems in 2010, and at the last election increased his majority by nearly 19,000 votes.
- You can find out more about Zac Goldsmith at BackZac2016.com
- In contrast, Sadiq Khan inherited a safe Labour seat and has reduced the majority there by 7,500 votes. It’s clear even Khan’s constituents don’t think he’s delivered for them.
- Sadiq Khan will be Corbyn’s man in City Hall. He has no regrets about backing Corbyn for the Labour leadership, and says he’d do so again. And if elected, Sadiq Khan would use London as a 4-year trial run for Corbyn’s radical policies.
- Sadiq Khan is heavily reliant on the Unions. He’s accepted tens of thousands of pounds in donations from the very unions trying to stop the Night Tube – and it’s clear he’d take their side every time when in City Hall.
- You can find out more about Sadiq Khan at SadiqWatch.com
The choice on 5 May is clear: Corbyn’s man in City Hall or your man, Zac Goldsmith, in City Hall.
Craig - we need your help to get these key messages out there.
New figures show that 268,000 new apprenticeships have already been started since the last general election.
These figures, covering August to October 2015, also show that over 2.6 million apprenticeships have now been started since May 2010.
By continuing to create more high quality apprenticeships, we are delivering our manifesto commitment to help more young people get the skills they need to secure a good job and get on in life.
The latest employment figures show that our long-term economic plan is working. 31.4 million people are in work and we have a 74% employment rate - the highest ever in the UK.
The Prime Minister said, "Unemployment is now below where it was before the recession. We must stick to our plan to keep delivering jobs and security for people."
After Jeremy Corbyn said on The Andrew Marr Show that he would have Trident submarines with no nuclear weapons on board and admitted he'd change strike laws, Defence Secretary Michael Fallon said:
“It’s clearer than ever that Labour are a threat to our national security and our economic security.
“Labour would weaken Britain's defences by having a nuclear deterrent without any nuclear weapons, and would weaken our economy by changing the law to increase the number of disruptive strikes.
“That's why Labour are a threat to the security of every working family.”
For decades, sink estates, and sometimes the people who lived in them, have been seen as something simply to be managed, leading to gangs, and entrenching poverty. It’s time to be more ambitious at every level.
Our mission is nothing short of social turnaround, removing and replacing the country’s worst housing estates with safe and attractive homes. This will mean massive estate regeneration jump-started with a new £140 million fund, tenants protected, and land unlocked for new housing all over Britain.
We know the worst estates offer huge potential to be revived so that they become thriving communities and places which people want to live and work in, and that’s something, as part of our One Nation approach, we’re determined to deliver.
In our manifesto, we committed to English Votes for English Laws – and we’ve now delivered it.
The Housing Bill was the first piece of legislation to be subject to the new system.
It wasn’t fair that Scottish MPs could have a decisive say on laws that only affect people who live in England.
English Votes for English Laws helps ensure MPs throughout the United Kingdom have an equal voice – and will strengthen the Union by giving English people more say over their own destiny.
We’re putting policies into action to deliver security and opportunity for working people.
And by introducing English Votes for English Laws, this Government is continuing to deliver on the commitments we made to the British people at the last election.
With the Government’s new Help to Buy: ISA thousands more people will be given the opportunity to own their own home.
Since Labour’s financial crisis first-time buyers who are doing the right thing have struggled to save for a home of their own.
That’s why we’re backing working people who are saving up for their first home by offering an unprecedented bonus on the money they save in a dedicated Help to Buy: ISA.
Under the scheme first-time buyers will be able to save up to £200 a month, which the Government will then top up by 25 per cent, up to a maximum of £3,000. In the first month you can put in up to £1,200.
So as long as you’re prepared to use the money saved to use towards a deposit on a home, for every £200 that you put in, the Government will give you an extra £50.
We’re delivering on our plan to help people across Britain achieve their dream of owning their own home and to ensure economic security at every stage of your life.
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To protect our economic security, we are taking the difficult decisions to live within our means and bring our debts down. The public spending plans set out today will mean that we will reach a surplus of £10.1 billion in 2019/20 – that’s higher than was forecast at the Budget and means Britain will be out of the red and into the black.