THE public “don't trust a single promise” Keir Starmer makes, the SNP have said, as Labour unveiled a slimmed-down list of pledges.

At a campaign event in Essex on Thursday, the Labour leader unveiled the party’s “first steps” plan for government if Starmer wins the next election.

But Mhairi Black has accused Starmer of peddling “empty slogans” during his speech.

Starmer outlined six key steps he said would be central to Labour’s strategy if it forms the next government.

They are:

  • Deliver economic stability
  • Cut NHS waiting times
  • Launch a new border security command
  • Set up Great British Energy
  • Crack down on antisocial behaviour
  • Recruit 6500 new teachers

But they are notably less far-reaching than the “five missions” Labour has previously touted.

Asked whether this constituted a scaling-back of ambition, Starmer said he was “not scaling back absolutely at all”.

He said the pledges announced on Thursday were “not to reduce the missions”, saying they were the “first down payments on the delivery of those missions”.

Starmer added: “We’re putting flesh on the bones by saying these are the first steps we’ll take in order to deliver the missions but the missions, each and every single one of them are there as the long-term ambitions, goals, targets, the driving purpose of an incoming Labour government.”

READ MORE: Keir Starmer removes leadership election pledges from website

The “five missions” include making Britain a “clean energy superpower” by 2030 and getting growth to the “highest sustained level in the G7” in the next five years.

By contrast, the new “first steps” committed to setting up Great British Energy – without mention of a clean power target – and delivering “economic stability” without the GDP growth target.

Black said the public would not trust Starmer’s new pledges given his series of policy U-turns since he was elected Labour leader in 2020.

'Broken promises and empty slogans'

He was elected on a 10-point policy platform, almost all of which have since been junked.

Black said: “Sir Keir Starmer's speech was full of broken promises and empty slogans – demonstrating why voting SNP is the only way to stand up for Scotland, protect our NHS, and advance our journey towards independence.

READ MORE: Labour not scaling back government ambitions, Starmer insists at campaign launch

“On the biggest issues damaging the UK, from austerity cuts to Brexit, the Labour Party is wedded to the same reckless policies as the Tories.

“You can't stabilise the economy if you are trashing it with Brexit, and you can't deliver strong public services if you are imposing billions of pounds of cuts to our NHS, schools and police.

“The problem for Sir Keir is that he has U-turned on nearly every policy he has ever promised – so it's little wonder the public don't trust a single promise he now makes.”

And she pointed out that Starmer failed to mention Scotland once during his speech or the question and answer session with the media which followed.

Black added: “And with no mention of Scotland throughout his speech, it's clear that Sir Keir Starmer intends to be prime minister for England only.

“At the General Election, only the SNP will stand up for Scotland's values, protect our public services, and progress Scotland's journey to independence.”

Conservative Party chair Richard Holden issued a similar warning, branding Starmer a “serial promise-breaker who doesn’t have the courage or conviction to stick to a single pledge he has ever made”.

He added: “Today’s speech was devoid of any plan for Britain.”