UK news Nearly Northern Ireland 3,000 families affected by welfare limit on two children last news
PremierLeague-News.Com - More than 2,700 families in Northern Ireland have been impacted by a “cruel” policy that limits welfare benefits for households with more than two children.
PremierLeague-News.Com - Breaking Sport Transfer News ! "More than 2,700 families in Northern Ireland have been impacted by a “cruel” policy that limits welfare benefits for households with more than two children. Established in April 2017, the two-child limit policy provides support through Universal Credit for a maximum of two children. As of February 2019, new claims from families regardless of how many children they have were allowed. Previous claims, however, are still affected by the policy.In September last year, then-Communities Minister Caral Ni Chuilin announced she is planning to support those affected by benefit reforms, including through the bedroom tax and the two-child limit, by ensuring they are included “in any future legislation and regulations”.In response to a recent Assembly question, the current Communities Minister Deirdre Hargey said that, as of August 2020, there were a total of 2,730 households in Northern Ireland impacted by the two-child policy.Families affected by the limit lose out on around £2,700 in support each year. This represents more than £10m in Northern Ireland.Dr Ciara Fitzpatrick, a lecturer at Ulster University’s School of Law, said the 2,730 figure is conservative as families in receipt of working tax credits and child tax credits are also impacted by the two-child limit.“This policy is cruel, it’s absolutely abhorrent. One of my social policy colleagues described it as ‘the worst social policy that has ever been introduced’, and he’s not wrong,” she said.“It penalises those who are on a low income for having more than two children. You have to bear in mind that half of those affected are in work. That’s important because the rhetoric around the policy when it was introduced was that those receiving benefits should have to make the same hard decisions as taxpayers regarding how many children they have.
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.”Dr Fitzpatrick said the pandemic has worsened the issue.“So many people had more than two children before the pandemic hit and suddenly they might find themselves redundant and out of work, and they only have benefits for two of their children,” she said.“That means they have to stretch the little resources they have. In Northern Ireland around 21% of families have three or more children, compared to 14.7% in the rest of the UK, so NI is disproportionately impact by this policy. This also brings in the whole abortion issue and access to services, which is a factor.”Last month, Minister Hargey said mitigations in place to lessen the impact of welfare reforms, such as the two-child limit and bedroom tax, in Northern Ireland will be made permanent.She said she will bring plans forward regarding the change to the Assembly in the next six weeks. Mitigations were due to end in March last year, however they were extended.“The paper has been submitted to the Executive, so I am just waiting on sign off then to move to the next phase,” Ms Hargey said.In February it was warned that the human cost of the draft budget set out by the Department for Communities would be “colossal”. The draft budget includes cuts to welfare reform mitigations."
Source = PremierLeague-News.Com