Alison Garnham's blog

Damning proof that the government has no evidence benefits sanctions work

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The National Audit Office says the government has failed to measure whether sanctioning benefit claimants represents value for money.

David Cameron's record on child poverty

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David Cameron’s final words at PMQs today – “Nothing is really impossible if you put your mind to it” – bring to my mind one of his early speeches on poverty. 

Divided Britain

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In searching for explanations for the cataclysmic events of 23 June, commentators have alighted on the obvious voting divides by age, region and level of disadvantage across the UK. The amazing thing is that this should come as any surprise.

Time to 'stick or twist' on wage subsidy

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It’s undoubtedly good news that Stephen Crabb, the new Work & Pensions Secretary, insists that Universal Credit will be one of his main priorities. The key question, however, is will it be one of the Chancellor’s priorities?

The big warning in Unicef’s report on child wellbeing

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This blog was originally published on Progress.

Why I campaign

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Our Chief Executive was featured in the Third Sector magazine, talking about her 'light bulb' moment that took her towards a career in welfare rights and campaigning.

Now you see it, now you don't. The government's magic trick on child poverty.

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This blog first appeared on the New Statesman on 7th December 2015. 

Now you see it…  Now you don’t.  The government’s rustled up a party trick for the kids this Christmas. They’re going to make 3.7 million of them disappear.

It seems children from low-income families are at the bottom of this government's list of priorities


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"A 100 days but already the parents of a child born on the 8 May would be justified in feeling nervous about her future. Since its re-election, the Conservative government has brought in a raft of policies that may profoundly affect their child's life."

While the government officially abolishes child poverty, things are getting worse


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If the Government goes ahead with its plans to redefine child poverty then it will be turning its backs on poor children and on the past.

No redefinition can hide the reality that the Government’s child poverty strategy is failing.  It was only a year ago that Iain Duncan Smith was claiming the child poverty targets would be met but last week’s child poverty statistics showed that absolute child poverty has risen by half a million since 2010 and that progress on relative poverty has stalled.

We can do so much better on child poverty


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‘A strong society means moving forward together, no one left behind, fighting relative poverty a central policy goal.’ Well, Child Poverty Action Group would say that, wouldn’t they? In fact, these are the words of David Cameron, less than a decade ago, a day on which he also proclaimed: ‘I want this message to go out loud and clear: the Conservative party recognises, will measure and will act on relative poverty’.