Fam­i­lies in cri­sis must be helped

Harefield Gazette - - OPINION - JAVED KHAN Chief Ex­ec­u­tive, Barnardo’s

CUR­RENTLY, 3.7 mil­lion chil­dren live in poverty in the UK and the num­ber looks set to rise steeply again.

Barnardo’s works with the fam­i­lies who strug­gle daily at the coal face of the UK’s stub­born poverty prob­lem.

Wor­ry­ingly, the Con­ser­va­tives have com­mit­ted to cut­ting £12bn of the wel­fare bill. It’s un­clear ex­actly where the money will come from, but they have al­ready pledged to re­strict hous­ing and out-of-work benefits for young peo­ple.

There are some cru­cial steps the new Gov­ern­ment can take to im­prove the poor­est chil­dren’s life chances.

Firstly, they should guar­an­tee that wel­fare cuts will not fall on the most vul­ner­a­ble – start­ing with a com­plete re­view of the fi­nan­cially pun­ish­ing sanc­tions sys­tem.

The main po­lit­i­cal par­ties have a legal duty to erad­i­cate child poverty by 2020.

It is im­per­a­tive that the UK looks af­ter fam­i­lies who fall into cri­sis, by main­tain­ing a benefits sys­tem that will nur­ture the chil­dren most in need of it.

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