Midlothian SNP MSP slams the Tories after reports shows austerity policies have "likely" caused more deaths than Covid

Following a new report showing Tory austerity policies have “likely” caused more deaths than the Covid-19 virus, local MSP Christine Grahame has said that the human cost of Scotland remaining under the control of the Tories has been laid bare.

SNP MPs have also urged the Prime Minister to recall parliament so the UK government can scrap its “ cruel austerity measures” to save lives.

The report, produced by Glasgow University and the Glasgow Centre for Population Health (GCPH), revealed that almost 335,000 more deaths than expected were recorded across Scotland, England and Wales in an eight year period, and that these were “likely to have been caused by UK government economic policy”.

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In Scotland, 12,735 excess deaths were recorded amongst men, and 6,564 amongst women - making a total of 19,299 excess deaths. Researchers have said the figures are “not only shocking but shameful”.

Midlothian South MSP Christine Grahame (SNP).

Ms Grahame, SNP MSP for Midlothian South said: “The human cost of Scotland remaining under Westminster control and the Tories’ cruel austerity agenda has been laid bare in this report. Independence is the only way Scotland can escape austerity for good.

“The fact that almost 335,000 deaths - almost 20,000 in Scotland - are likely to have been caused by UK government policies should serve as a wake up call to the UK government and shame every single Tory to their core, including Douglas Ross and the rest of the Scottish Tories.

“The UK government had the opportunity to change course in its recent mini-budget by scrapping debt-inducing policies and bringing in meaningful, targeted support to help low and middle income families get through the cost-of-living crisis. Instead, it chose to confirm Tory austerity 2.0 with more cuts that will threaten our vital NHS and public services, scrap the cap on bankers bonuses and, before u-turning, cut tax for the wealthiest.

“It is time for the Scottish Conservative Party to stand up for people in Scotland and help to save lives across the country by denouncing the Tory austerity agenda and calling on their boss to up-rate benefits as promised, so people aren’t left cold or hungry.”

The Scottish Conservatives declined the opportunity to comment on the report.