Gingerbread, the charity for single parents, has responded to Don’t Judge My Family’s call for evidence to say that they believe “a tax break that will see children whose parents aren’t married lose out financially is unacceptable”.
Caroline Davey from Gingerbread continued: “Children from single parent families are twice as likely to live in poverty as those from families headed by a couple, and with so many families struggling with rising living costs and swathes of cuts to vital benefits, it would be incredibly ill-judged to push through a tax break based on marital status. One in four families in the UK is headed by a single parent and one in six by a cohabitating couple. The notion of a marriage tax break is completely out of step with modern families.”
“Instead, we believe that if the Government has £550m available to spend on families then this should be concentrated on providing support to the poorest families to enable them to lift their families out of poverty. There is a clear and urgent case to invest a further £200 million in childcare under universal credit, to cover 85% of childcare costs for all instead of just – as proposed – to those who earn enough to pay tax. This would help to make it easier for parents to return to work and to make working extra hours pay. The money could be used not only to give more childcare support to those in greatest need, but to bring that support in much sooner, from April next year. Parents need more help with childcare costs now and simply can’t afford for the government to delay until 2016.”
Gingerbread were responding to a call for evidence by Don’t Judge My Family, the campaign against the marriage tax allowance. They are calling for evidence from organisations and individuals to find alternative uses for the funds earmarked for a marriage tax allowance. How should the Government use £550m a year to support families, sustain relationships or give children the best start in life?
More information on the call is available on our website. The deadline for responses is Friday 18th October 2013.