Jeremy Corbyn tells Scots pensioners: Labour can win an election
Jeremy Corbyn has said that Labour is ready and able to win an election as he met pensioners on the latest leg of his tour of Scotland.
The UK Labour leader stated his party’s commitment to older people and the young as he attended a pensioners’ tea party at St Bryce Kirk in Kirkcaldy, Fife.
He pledged to protect the free bus pass and the triple lock on state pensions, as well as protect the winter fuel allowance.
Mr Corbyn has kept the party on campaign footing since the snap general election in June and is visiting marginal seats held by the SNP on a five day tour of Scotland.
The Labour leader said his party is ready to defeat the Government if there is another election.
He said: “We challenged them in the election, we challenged them on the public sector pay cap, we’re going to challenge them all through the autumn in parliament.
“They cannot survive on the basis of sweetheart deals with the DUP and think it’s going to go on forever.
“We’re ready, we’re able, we’re very willing and above all we’re very determined and very united on winning an election for the many and not the few.”
Mr Corbyn restated his party’s commitment to the concessionary travel scheme the day after a consultation was launched on raising the age at which Scots can obtain the bus pass.
The Scottish Government is proposing to increase the age of eligibility amid rising numbers of older people and a £9.5 million budget cut for the scheme.
On the fourth day of his visit to Scotland, Mr Corbyn will also promise a Labour government would keep the triple lock on state pensions and protect the winter fuel allowance after Tory plans to means-test the benefit south of the border.
Mr Corbyn, said that “Labour will extend the welfare state from the cradle to the grave.
“People who have spent their lives paying into the system deserve something back.
“That is why Labour will protect pensioner incomes by legislating to keep the triple-lock on state pensions, protecting the pensions of over one million Scottish pensioners and guaranteeing them a basic income necessary to live a dignified life in retirement.”
He also called for opportunities for young people, and for a decent living wage.
SNP MSP Mairi Gougeons said: “The SNP is committed to supporting bus services and concessionary travel nationally, and that’s why the SNP Government is consulting on how best to utilise the concessionary travel scheme to benefit those who have the greatest reliance on free bus travel.
“Everyone that has a bus pass can be reassured that there is absolutely no prospect of losing their entitlement as part of this consultation and for those with a disability, the scheme will not change for them or their companion. This is despite scares from Scottish Labour - whose former transport spokesperson, Elaine Murray, previously considered raising the age of those entitled to a bus pass to 65.
“As stated in our 2016 manifesto, the SNP Government wants to extend concessionary travel to young modern apprentices and, later on, to young recipients of job grants, and will listen carefully to the views across Scotland to find out how the people of Scotland see the future of the scheme.”