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Universal credit and mental health

07 May 2021
There is no doubt that the past year has changed all of our lives in ways we could not have imagined - affecting our relationships, our finances and our mental health. For families living on a low income though, the daily stresses of getting by were unfortunately nothing new, and the pandemic has only made matters worse. Families have faced additional costs such as higher food and energy bills associated with staying at home more. New evidence shows that those in the greatest financial difficulty going into the pandemic are more likely to have reported mental health problems.

The ripple effect of poverty on children in London

23 April 2021
Without a doubt, the COVID‐19 pandemic has affected the entire country in different ways. Some would argue that children have been affected the most and others would not. Nevertheless, even before COVID‐19 the children of London needed support.

Uniform mistakes: the cost of going back to school

20 April 2021
This week, many children will clamber out of bed, clamber into their uniform and return to school for the summer term. School uniforms impose a uniform cost on parents and carers, which can mean that those who have the least are hit the hardest.

Disability Rights Handbook on AskCPAG

14 April 2021
We are delighted to announce the launch of a new digital version of the Disability Rights Handbook, in partnership with Disability Rights UK.

Does the cap fit? Researching the benefit cap’s effect on paid work

30 March 2021
Official statistics released today show that the number of households subject to the benefit cap has increased again. 180,000 households were capped in November 2020, up from 170,000 in August 2020.

We must start with poverty

25 March 2021
“Babies and children in England will get a better start in life”. That’s the kind of opening line we’d hope for in a cross-governmental child poverty strategy. We know that poverty affects children’s ability to thrive, that children growing up in poverty do less well in school, and that poorer children are more likely to have poorer mental and physical health. Tackling poverty therefore has to be at the heart of the government’s plans. However, this is the introduction to the government’s review into reducing inequalities in the first 1,001 days of life in England. And addressing poverty barely gets a look in.

200,000 more children pushed into poverty the year before the pandemic - ‘dismal data’ warning

25 March 2021
The publication of today’s annual poverty statistics for the year leading up to the pandemic (Households Below Average Income 2019- 2020) shows: 200,000 more children fell into relative poverty (after housing costs) in 2019-2020 – twice the increase in the previous year. That means 4.3 million children (31% of all UK children) are in poverty - up from 3.6 million in 2010-11.

How can we improve social security? Let’s start by listening to families

24 March 2021
While some of us are counting down the days until the next stage of unlocking, eager to go out for a meal or go shopping, for many families living on a low income there is no end in sight. As one parent explained, the end of restrictions would mean going “from a viral lockdown to a financial lockdown”.

New survey: families lack digital tools for home learning and worry more about costs

17 March 2021
More than a third of low-income families are missing essential digital resources for future home learning; parents had to make ‘impossible choices’ to decide who got access to digital devices and bandwidth while schools were closed; concern about money is higher than last year among poorer families; 90% of low-income families spent more on bills with children at home in lockdown.

Short changed this Mother’s Day? The case for child benefit

15 March 2021
It was Mother’s Day yesterday, a good time to recognise the unpaid but incredibly valuable work carried out by mothers across the UK. Yet despite the strides society has made in gender equality, there remains a gendered financial impact of parenthood on women. One way our society aims to recognise the additional costs brought by raising a family is through child benefit. Paid to the main carer, most often the mother, this gives many women money to spend on the things their children need.