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Single parents will suffer most from benefit cuts

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by Kay Mitchell

According to the Fawcett Society, the gender equality charity, lone parents are set to be squeezed by the Government’s austeirty measures, which include cuts to benefits and tax hikes.

A report by the Society explains the public service cuts will result in lone mothers losing an average 8.5% of their income after tax by 2015.

This compares with 7.5% for single fathers, 6.5% for couples with children and 2.5% for childless couples.

Anna Bird of the Society comments: “Single women, on average, are set to lose a greater proportion of their income than other households, such as single men or couple households.”

She explains this is because, on average, women are poorer than men and because “women make up the vast majority of lone parents”.

Ms Bird believes that the poorer people in society are acting as “shock absorbers” for the cuts with lone parents (in particular mothers) suffering the most.

According to the charity, lone parents are being hit by the three-year freeze on child benefit, reductions in housing benefit, as well as the cut in the childcare element of the working tax credit.

Their report was conducted from analysis from by the Institute for Fiscal Studies on the impact of changes announced by Chancellor George Osborne in this year’s Budget, as well as last autumn’s Comprehensive Spending Review and the emergency Budget of June 2010.

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News posted: June 23, 2011

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