JEREMY Corbyn speaking in Swindon yesterday confirmed that Labour will abolish zero-hours contracts.
He said that, ‘Some one million people are on zero-hours contracts’ and that ‘They do not know how much they will earn from one week to another.’ He asked: ‘Why do we allow this form of employment in this country?’ and declared, ‘A Labour government would end zero-hours contracts.’
He also highlighted that six million people work for an inadequate wage. ‘So a Labour government would introduce a living wage of £10 an hour’, he says. He accepted that some small firms would have problems paying £10 an hour but that Labour would have a scheme to ensure they are compensated as appropriate.
The Tories have broken their promises on class sizes and allowed overcrowding in schools to become normality, both Corbyn and Shadow Education Secretary Angela Rayner declared. Corbyn and Rayner have published new research showing the scale of ‘terrible’ super-size classes with children ‘crammed into classrooms like sardines’.
They pointed to a situation where 40,000 primary school children are now in classes of over 36 pupils, and 16,600 are now in class sizes of at least 40. The Conservative manifesto in 2010 promised ‘small schools with small class sizes’. The worst affected area is the south east, with over 90,000 primary school pupils in classes over 30.
The number of ‘titan’ primary schools, with over 800 pupils, has increased almost seven-fold since 2010. Almost half a million children are in super size primary school classrooms, and the situation is worsening.
Corbyn said: ‘Seven years of Tory failure and broken promises have left our schools in a terrible state. Hundreds of thousands of our children are paying the price, crammed into classrooms like sardines. The prime minister herself has said that super-sized classes are proof of a school system in a crisis. And that’s what we’ve got on the Tories’ watch.
‘School leaders and teachers have said that Tory cuts to school budgets will mean class sizes will be forced to grow even larger. We cannot risk our children’s education in this way. Labour will stand up for all children by building a schools system for everyone, keeping class sizes down and making sure schools and teachers have the resources they need to ensure that every child, whatever their background, has access to a world-class education.’