Welfare reforms could push 250,000 children deeper into poverty

The government’s new Universal Credit will hit poorer working mums the hardest, according to a report by the charity Save the Children. The report, Ending Child Poverty: Ensuring Universal Credit Supports Working Mums, argues that the potential impact of the new welfare system, which is due to replace tax credits and most benefits from 2013, risks making life harder for some families.

It identifies three main areas of concern:

  • insufficient earnings disregards for working mothers
  • lack of support for childcare costs
  • Universal Credit payments will be withdrawn too quickly.

Without changes in these areas, it argues, the scheme’s aims of making work pay by supporting parents into work and of reducing child poverty could be undermined. 

The report warns that around 150,000 of the UK’s poorest single working mums could lose up to £68 a week under the new system, pushing a quarter of a million children deeper into poverty.

The full report, Ending Child Poverty: Ensuring Universal Credit Supports Working Mums, can be found on the Save the Children website.

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