Budget: Chancellor urged to avoid 'break-up' measures

People on swings Families are deeply anxious about the government's austerity measures says a charity

A family charity has appealed to the chancellor to avoid delivering what it calls a "break-up Budget" on Wednesday.

The Family and Parenting Institute (FPI) urges George Osborne to protect families in his 2012 Budget.

The charity says money worries can lead to divorce and that families with children have been hardest hit by recent tax and benefit changes.

A Treasury spokeswoman said: "If the deficit is not tackled now, the impact on families will be worse."

She added: "There is nothing fair about running huge budget deficits and burdening future generations with debts we cannot afford to pay.

"This has meant tough decisions, but the government has made them in the fairest way, taking real action to benefit families in all aspects of their lives."

But a report for the FPI by the Institute of Fiscal Studies has suggested that families with children have borne a disproportionate share of the pain from measures aimed at cutting the deficit.

The report, published earlier this year, calculated that the average income of households with children would drop by 4.2% between 2010-11 and 2015-16, the equivalent of £1,250 a year.

'Deeply anxious'

By contrast, average household income would fall by 0.9% or less than £214 a year.

Dr Katherine Rake, FPI chief executive, said: "Families are deeply anxious over the government's austerity programme.

"They are being hit by a raft of painful measures including changes to tax credits, the scrapping of the Child Trust Fund, the end of universal Child Benefit and the proposed Housing Benefit cap.

"The chancellor has taken so much away from family pockets. The Budget 2012 must be the one which strengthens family life."

Dr Rake said statistics released at the end of last year showed that divorces increased in England and Wales for the first time in eight years.

Figures released in December by the Office for National Statistics showed the divorce rate rose by almost 5% in 2010.

The Treasury spokeswoman said steps to boost family budgets included doubling free childcare places for two-year-olds and increasing Child Tax Credit.

She said cuts in fuel duty, the freezing of council tax and increases in the level of personal tax allowance would help families, while the new Universal Credit would make three million households better off and help 80,000 with childcare costs.


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  • rate this

    Comment number 153.

    134 Martin. I have thought about it and assuming that your kids will be working and earning, a lot of what they pay in taxes etc will be used to look after you when you stop working, as will my kids on me. Also I doubt very much that what they will pay will equate to what they take out of the system. We have been taking from a system funded by massive borrowing - hence the mess we are in now.

  • rate this

    Comment number 92.

    Get off your high horse childless generation. We are putting in the hard work to raise the next generation while you indulge yourselves in the modern orgy of self centred me-me-me cult. Who will take you to the loo when you're old and worn out? Kids born today. Hard work and self sacrifice goes into raising kids well, it's 24/7 so put it into perspective please, it seriously reduces earning power.

  • rate this

    Comment number 79.

    This wont happen. This government are committed to help big business, bankers and the rich 7% Familys are been made homelees in the U.K. the sick old and young people schools and all services' are all due for more savage cuts and increase in all household bills.

  • rate this

    Comment number 33.

    I am single, no kids, worked every day of my life and never claimed and never eligible for one single penny back from the government. On budget day the best I can hope for is less tax in the over-inflated bills. No free this, or that for me. Even Cameron is eligible for child benefits. How can that be right?

    How about a worker friendly budget Osbourne?

  • rate this

    Comment number 27.

    Raise taxes on things we don't need, can do without, or otherwise do not need to pay. For example, if gas and electricity use above a certain figure per house were to rise, it would hit only large house owners.

    If diesel taxes were to rise for lorries, with lorry road tax at nil, it would raise quite a lot from foreign lorries.without hurting ours.

    Target tax away from the man in the street.


Comments 5 of 6


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