RAISE income tax not national insurance.

It is most unfair to raise the essential additional funding for the NHS and social care by increasing National Insurance. The funding should come from increasing income tax, which will place the burden where it can best be carried.

National Insurance is paid by all working people as soon as their annual earnings are equivalent to £9,568, that is from a very low wage. Also, currently National Insurance is not paid on annual earnings above £50,284, the very well paid do not pay proportionately.

This places the burden on the lower paid people in work, If the funding were raised by increasing income tax rates, the burden would be carried by those best able to carry it.

Lower paid workers would not be affected. Very well-paid workers would pay on their higher earning. Older pensioners who are not very well off would not be affected because they do not fall into taxation now. Importantly, those older pensioners who are well enough off to fall into taxation now, would contribute proportionately to funding the benefits that will largely come to them.

I am 78. Based on my taxable income for 2019-20, if the rate of income tax were raised from 20 per cent to 22 per cent I would pay an additional £400. Provided the increased portion was ring-fenced for NHS and Social Care, this would be perfectly acceptable to me and, I believe, to many other pensioners in a similar position.

JOHN HARVEY Abbotsbury Road, Broadstone