The Benefit Cap and Children
I have a post up at politics.co.uk, looking at the Benefit Cap. I point out that the vast majority of the families that will be hit by this policy have children, that on average they will lose more than £60 a week and twenty thousand families will become homeless. Large families will be harder hit – three quarters of the families that lose have three or more children. Large families are already more likely to be poor, so this policy will increase the number of children in poverty.
The campaign in support of this measure is especially disgraceful, accusing unemployed people of not wanting to work. There’s an excellent report from the Church of Scotland and the Baptist, Methodist and United Reform churches that I didn’t have space for in my original post, but which gets the politics of myths about the poor absolutely right:
There are many other myths about poverty and the lives of the poorest. Each one allows us feel better about living in a society where so many people just scrape by, existing rather than thriving. Placing the blame for poverty on the bad behaviour of the poorest encourages us to accept inequality and the damage it does to our society, and it hides the complex nature of poverty in our nation. Without facing up to the realities of poverty, we will never come close to tackling it and enabling those who are trapped to begin to fulfil their potential.