UK Prime Minister Rishi Sunak Vows to Maintain Two-Child Benefit Cap if Conservatives Win in 2024

UK PM Sunak pledges to keep controversial 2-child benefit cap if Tories win 2024 election, despite criticism it worsens child poverty. Debate highlights tensions between welfare reform and social justice.

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Quadri Adejumo
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UK Prime Minister Rishi Sunak Vows to Maintain Two-Child Benefit Cap if Conservatives Win in 2024

UK Prime Minister Rishi Sunak Vows to Maintain Two-Child Benefit Cap if Conservatives Win in 2024

UK Prime Minister Rishi Sunak has pledged that the Conservative Party will maintain the controversial two-child benefit cap if they win the 2024 general election. The policy, introduced in 2017, limits the Universal Credit support that families can receive to two children, costing affected households up to £3,200 a year.

Sunak defended the cap, stating, "Working families do not see their incomes rise when they have more children. Families on benefits should be asked to make the same financial decisions as those supporting themselves solely through work." The Prime Minister's commitment to the two-child limit comes as part of his broader plans to reform the welfare system and reduce the number of people receiving benefits.

However, the policy has faced strong criticism from charities and campaigners, who argue that it contributes to record levels of child poverty in the UK. Alison Garnham, the CEO of the Child Poverty Action Group, condemned the cap as a "nasty policy" that "punishes kids for having brothers and sisters." Campaigners have called for the abolition of the two-child limit, with a recent campaign aiming to lift a million children out of poverty by 2030 including the scrapping of the cap as one of its key demands.

Why this matters: The debate over the two-child benefit cap highlights the ongoing tensions between welfare reform and child poverty in the UK. The policy's impact on struggling families and its potential role in worsening child poverty levels have significant implications for social justice and the well-being of children across the country.

Economists estimate that removing the two-child cap would cost less than £2 billion, potentially lifting 300,000 children out of poverty and improving the lives of an additional 800,000. While the opposition Labour Party, led by Keir Starmer, has faced pressure to commit to scrapping the policy if they win the election, they have so far maintained their position of not changing the cap. As the 2024 general election approaches, the future of the two-child benefit limit and its impact on child poverty in the UK remains a critical point of contention between the Conservative and Labour parties.

Key Takeaways

  • UK PM Sunak pledges to keep 2-child benefit cap if Tories win 2024 election.
  • Sunak defends cap, saying families on benefits should make same decisions as workers.
  • Charities condemn cap as "nasty policy" that "punishes kids for having siblings".
  • Removing cap could lift 300k children out of poverty, improve 800k more lives.
  • Labour Party maintains position of not changing the 2-child benefit cap.