#Enough: Our Responsibility to meet families’ needs

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Children without enough to meet their basic needs are denied a decent start in life. These children can expect fewer qualifications, lower-paid jobs, more illness and shorter lives than their richer classmates. That is unnecessary and unacceptable.

Poverty is not being able to do things that are necessities. Things that are important like gas and electric, showers, bus fares, and having to worry that your daughter has a hole in her shoes. She needs new shoes and I don’t have the money. What do I do? Do I get gas or do I get shoes?”1.

Enough asks that we keep the link between a family’s needs and the support it is offered by the benefit system. The Welfare Reform and Work Bill currently being debated in Parliament seeks to break that link for millions of families with children. Enough asks that children have enough.

The Bill’s “two child rule” means that families with three or more children will receive the same support as a family with two children – although their needs will clearly be greater.

The Benefit Cap will be lowered and the limit on welfare will bear no relation to a family’s needs or even average incomes (its initial rationale). Should a family be smaller than average the cap is reduced, yet should a family be larger than average it is not increased.

The result will be many families, and many children, living long term without enough.

Blogs

 

Download this video to play ‘offline’ here

Enough is a report by
Church Action on Poverty
the Church of Scotland
the Baptist Union of Great Britain
the Methodist Church
the Scottish Episcopal Church
the United Reformed Church
Quakers in Britain

Footnotes
  1. Poverty in Scotland 2015, a Scottish Government & Poverty Truth Commission publication