The Social Mobility and Child Poverty (SMCP) Commission funded research exploring the parental employment outcomes - employment rates, hours of work and earnings - that would be necessary to meet the absolute and relative child poverty targets set in the Child Poverty Act 2010. The research uses household survey data and tax-benefit microsimulation modelling to forecast absolute and relative child poverty levels under a range of different scenarios for employment growth and earnings growth in the UK economy between now and 2020.
Its main conclusion is that it very difficult to meet the child poverty targets from improvements to parental employment outcomes alone. Even if the UK achieved OECD-beating parental employment levels - better than the Office for Budget Responsibility expects or to have ever been achieved in the United Kingdom - the statutory child poverty targets in the Child Poverty Act 2010 will be missed by a considerable distance. Parental employment of close to 100% would not be enough to meet the targets within the current tax and benefit system.