Additional family hardship on the horizon | CPAG

Additional family hardship on the horizon

Published on: 
12 August 2015
Written by: 

Donald Hirsch, Director, Centre for Research in Social Policy, Loughborough University

Since the election an important debate has opened up over how far state benefits should be underpinning family living standards. The government is clearly trying to reduce what it sees as unnecessary dependency, including for families in low-paid work. It has approached this from multiple angles.

Significantly higher minimum wages and tax allowances will increase families’ post-tax earnings. Extra support for childcare will help bring costs down. On the more ‘punitive’ side, means-tested support, both in and out of work is being cut substantially for all families and drastically for larger families. To George Osborne this feels like a winning combination: cover family costs by helping them to help themselves.

Unfortunately to many families it will not seem like that. For most, the losses in support will outstrip gains from higher wages.

Read the full blog by Donald Hirsch on Progress Online.