Shift to focus on root causes of benefit expenditure is welcome

January 20, 2014

Responding to today’s speech by Rachel Reeves, Shadow Work and Pensions Secretary, Alison Garnham, Chief Executive of Child Poverty Action Group, said:

“Rachel Reeves is spot on in saying that you can’t have a strong economy unless you have a system of social security that helps people into work, makes work pay and recognises contribution. Child poverty costs £29 billion every year, hitting families, the taxpayer and the wider economy.

“We should not forget that the vast majority of people receiving benefits, have worked, are working or soon will work again.

“Extra support for skills will help people looking for work and may cut benefit spending in the long term, but the big savings require a relentless focus on the structural drivers of expenditure. This means dealing with labour market failures, such as poverty-pay, childcare market failures so parents can afford the childcare they need to stay in work, and housing market failures that mean renting a decent home at a fair price, let alone owning one, is an impossible dream for millions of families.”

ENDS

Notes to Editors

  • CPAG is the leading charity campaigning for the abolition of child poverty in the UK and for a better deal for low-income families and children.
  • CPAG is the host organisation for the Campaign to End Child Poverty coalition, which has members from across civil society including children’s charities, faith groups, unions and other civic sector organisation, united in their campaigning for public and political commitment to ensure the goal of ending child poverty by 2020 is met.

For further information please contact:

Tim Nichols

CPAG Press Officer

Tel. 020 7812 5216 or 07816 909302 

tnichols@cpag.org.uk

www.cpag.org.uk