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Welfare Reform on the Web (April 2012): Social security - UK

Don't cut child benefit, PM told

J. Kirkup

Daily Telegraph, Mar. 15th 2012, p. 1 +2

An open letter to the Prime Minister organised by family charities called on him to abandon plans to withdraw child benefit from households including a higher rate taxpayer and to reconsider plans to freeze it for all other families. It reminded him of pre-election pledges to protect universal child benefit.

Families in child benefit threat 'need a pay cut'

C. Hope

Daily Telegraph, Mar. 6th 2012, p. 1 +4

Campaigners warned that 370,000 families would see a significant drop in their income from January 2013, when households including anyone earning more than 42,745 would lose their right to receive child benefit. The cuts had been heavily criticised for punishing 'stay at home' mothers, as a household with two people earning 40,000 each would keep their child benefit, while one with a single earner on 43,000 would lose it. The Institute of Fiscal Studies suggested that 170,000 families with a single earner on just over 42,700 would be better off taking a pay cut. The Coalition Government was said to be preparing to water down the plans to avoid offending middle-class voters.

(See also Daily Telegraph, Mar. 7th 2012, p. 2)

Not giving credit where it's due?

Anon

Labour Research, Mar. 2012, p. 13-15

This article explains how the coalition government's new Universal Credit will disadvantage women. The Universal Credit will combine out-of-work, in-work and housing benefits/tax credits into one means tested benefit. Couples living in the same household will be obliged to make a joint claim for the benefit, which will be paid monthly. This could be problematic for women in less stable relationships, where the man could misuse or not share the payment with the woman and children.

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