Child Benefit Cuts: Get Over It

| October 5, 2010

You would think from today’s media frenzy that the government have announced scarpping child benefit entirely.

Instead, all they’ve announced is one of the most sensible issues ever – cut a benefit to people who absolutely do not need it.

Let’s make it clear – the original purpose of child benefit was help raise child out of poverty. The reality now is that for many people, it’s just a tax break.

Underlined: benefits should be for those in need of financial assistance, not just everybody.

And David Cameron’s refusal to suggest people earning over £44,000 per year are rich shows the over-sensitivity to the issue. The fact is – if you are earning over £44,000 per year, then you are in the Top 60% of UK earners.

People on that income are not poor – you are rich. No one earning over £44,000 is in serious danger of poverty and neither are their children.

So why on earn are some people outraged that the government plans to cut benefit hand outs to the rich?

Even before our current Age of Austerity, child benefit has always been a stupid part of the welfare system. It should always have been scrapped. It is only now when budget cutbacks are necessitated that the waste is being culled from the system.

So why the supposed uproar?

Simply put, people don’t like having anything taken from them. That’s all this is about. And perfectly understandable, too.

But let’s be honest here – anyone about to lose child benefit by 2013 because they are earning over £44k was never in need of it anyway, it’s not going to hurt your wallet much, and really of of this is a load of whining for nothing.

Child benefit should be for the needy, not the rich.

Child benefit cuts? Bring them on, and everybody else: Get over it.


Comments (5)

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  1. Joe says:

    Firstly for a young couple where a parent chooses to say at home, £44,000 does not go far at all in London or in commuting distance. For single parents £44k plus child care costs will not go far at all. They would almost certainly be better off not working at all. Then instead of child benefits we can pay for benefits for the entire household.

    What the government have done (yet again) is make cuts that hurt people who work hard and once again ensure those who have not made the same sacrifices to improve their lives continue to get the benefit from people who do work hard and pay most of the tax to pay for those that don’t.

    I am shocked that such a mis-informed and opinionated load of drivel has been posted this website which I sadly mistook for somewhere to read up on serious news.

  2. ConcernedParent says:

    I think you are missing the point. It’s not that people making £44K are angry at losing it so mush as a one earner house where the person makes £45K a year loses the benefit but a two earner house where both people make $40K a year get to keep it. Why does the £45K household lose a benefit but the £80K household get to keep it. That is very counter-intuitive.

  3. Brian Turner says:

    @ConcernedParent, I agree – it should be cut for any family unit earning more than £40k.

    The current child benefit cuts don’t go far enough.

    @Joe – if someone is only able to work in London because they are receiving child benefit, then don’t you think such a family is living on the economic brink in the first place and should consider relocating away from London? Cheaper rental as well. Personally I don’t think it’s going to be the case at all – I think a huge amount has been blown up from this whole argument.

    And my apologies for having an opinion, but let’s face it, I think child benefit for been abused for decades. I’m pointing out that the Emperor has no clothes. It would be typically British to just keep quiet and claim the meagre benefit offerings instead because it’s a freebie, yes?

  4. Mrs Ince says:

    I agree if you earn over £44k you probably dont need it but both of you earning £43k can still get it. Where is the logic in that. I understand they have got to have a cut off point but it should go on the total household income!

  5. Sarah says:

    Actually – you’re factually *wrong*. The purpose of the Child Benefit is not to life children out of poverty. (That was the Child Tax Credit you’re thinking of). Child Benefit replaced the earlier tax relief people recieved for having a child. Instead of paying less tax, it was swapped to a child benefit payment to ensure a) a bit of gender equality, it went to mothers rather than reducing the main workers tax debt (usually fathers) and b) that low income families also benefitted.

    It is a recognition of the fact that while families pay a high cost for raising children, it’s actually all of society that benefits. The idea was to spread a bit of the finacial burden across the community, as it it the whole community that benefits (i.e. a child’s future tax contributions will eventually pay well over and above the amount of CB they recieved, AND pay into my old age pensions!).