[United Kingdom] Universal Credit Must Be Halted Until We Can Guarantee Children In Poverty Will Not Be Impacted

04 Dec 2018
Huffington Post

Huffington has published a blog by Anne Longfield, the Children’s Commissioner for England, in which she refers to the annual report by the Joseph Rowntree Foundation which shows around 4 million children are living in poverty in UK, with the growing poverty rates for working families. The report shows working partners are under higher risk to be in poverty compared to working non-parents. According to Longfield: “if you grow up in poverty you have less chance of living a healthy, prosperous life.” Growing up in poverty impacts the childhood and leaves a mark on the adulthood as well, since often resulting in lower level of educations obtained, limited employment opportunities and lower ambitions and aspirations. In her blog Longfield emphasized the importance of eliminating poverty, and reflected upon the changes in the Universal credit policy targeting children. This social security payment policy has entered into force in 2012 in UK, but was criticized to lower the incentives for beneficiaries to seek for paid jobs. The changes of the policy are under discussion but Longfield warns it is essential to ensure children and their parents living in poverty are not affected. For this purpose, all of the UK Children’s Commissioners united last year in their call to the policy makers to postpone the roll-out of Universal Credit policy until the analysis of the impact in general and especially on families is available.


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