Children’s charities and campaigners have broadly welcomed new measures to help low-income families announced by Gordon Brown in his budget speech last week.
The main string to the Chancellor’s bow is the use of child benefit and child tax credits to target child poverty. Brown said that the most effective way of redirecting money to low and middle income families was to raise the child element of the child tax credit, which over the next three years will improve by 14%. Child benefit is also set to increase to £17.45 from April this year.
4Children chief executive Anne Longfield said Brown’s approach was proof that the government was on the right track to tackling child poverty, and the crucial needs to support families across the country.
The budget also saw the launch of a children and young people’s policy review to “inform the 2007 comprehensive spending review”. The indications are that, with future services aiming to give greater protective and preventive support, families with disabled children will receive more attention.