For a Prime Minister who walked into Downing Street decrying the ‘burning injustice’ of poverty and contrasting the opportunities available to some children but not others, there was a disappointing omission in last week’s budget: child poverty.
Today’s Guardian covered new analysis by CPAG and IPPR on the impact of cuts to universal credit. This analysis shows that universal credit cuts will hit families with children hardest, and will be poverty-producing to the tune of around a million children (comparing universal credit as originally designed with its current form).
The National Audit Office says the government has failed to measure whether sanctioning benefit claimants represents value for money. Does anyone remember evidence-based policymaking? For the DWP, it appears from today’s National Audit Office (NAO) report on sanctions, it is at best a dim and distant memory.
Universal Credit, the new benefit for families on low incomes, was claimed to have huge potential to reduce child poverty, incentivise work and make life easier for struggling families. But this isn’t how it is turning out.