Thanks to the reader who drew my attention to a recently released Ministerial Committee on Poverty report. It contains information familiar to me but presented in new and revealing ways. For instance the chart below shows that of the 270,000 children 'in poverty' around half are not experiencing hardship. That's because income is arguably less important than outgoings, or budgetary prioritising:
This report is very encouraging in that it identifies children of beneficiaries and particularly sole parent beneficiaries as forming the major share of children at risk of deprivation, but it resists leftist solutions. It finds for more targeting (eg of services), not universalising payments (no child benefit as proposed by the Children's Commissioner), and is clear that getting sole parents into work, or increasing their hours, is the best strategy. It notes that in Nordic economies parents are expected to return to work when their child is 13 months old. It also makes mention of the need not to disincentivise work (or encourage fertility patterns that are not in the nest interests of children) with higher benefit payments. I will blog more of the graphs later.
Yes Minister — The Five Standard Excuses
1 hour ago