Oral Answers to Questions

Yasmin Qureshi Excerpts
Monday 5th February 2024

(4 months, 1 week ago)

Commons Chamber
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Mel Stride Portrait Mel Stride
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Thank you, Mr Speaker. The two-child cap is there for good reason: so that families in those circumstances are taking the same kind of decisions that others—the taxpayers funding benefits—have to take.

Yasmin Qureshi Portrait Yasmin Qureshi (Bolton South East) (Lab)
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5. What steps he is taking to help reduce child poverty.

Deidre Brock Portrait Deidre Brock (Edinburgh North and Leith) (SNP)
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13. What recent estimate he has made of the number of children in poverty.

Jo Churchill Portrait The Minister for Employment (Jo Churchill)
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In the latest statistics, there were 400,000 fewer children in absolute poverty after housing costs than there were in 2009-10. In this financial year, we will spend about £124 billion on welfare supporting working-age families. We are also providing £104 billion between 2022 and 2025 to help families with cost of living pressures. However, the Government’s focus is firmly on reducing the risk of child poverty by supporting parents into work in every way we can.

Yasmin Qureshi Portrait Yasmin Qureshi
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The Joseph Rowntree Foundation recently found that 42% of children in Bolton live below the poverty line. After 14 years of Tory cuts and general incompetence, Britain now has the worst rise in child poverty among the major countries. What would the Minister say to a young family in Bolton who told me, “One day we eat and one day we don’t”?

Jo Churchill Portrait Jo Churchill
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Nobody on either side of the House wants to see families struggling. However, I repeat that children living in workless households are about five times more likely to be in absolute poverty after housing costs than those in households where all adults work. The Government are supporting the whole family through our childcare support, which we have increased by almost 50% to £951 a month for one child or £1,630 for two; the increase in the national living wage to £11.44 from April; our cost of living offers; and so on.