Universal credit: Failure or innovation?

Vittorio Trevitt

Much controversy has surrounded universal credit, the flagship welfare reform of the Coalition government that comes into operation nationwide this October. The brainchild of Iain Duncan Smith, universal credit is designed to replace most existing welfare payments with a single benefit, and theoretically reduce poverty traps by enabling recipients to keep more of their money…

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Investing in childhood

Kate Bell

Political commitment to ending child poverty isn’t what it used to be. From 2010’s dizzy heights of embedding the target to abolish child poverty by 2020 in legislation, we now find it – potentially – downgraded to a footnote in the history of the last Labour government. Progress towards the target has stalled, with June’s…


Labour’s way

Stephen Timms MP

In opposition, David Cameron re-positioned his party with a new brand of ‘compassionate Conservatism’ that could heal ‘broken Britain’. Three years into government, the record contrasts sharply with those promises. Recently, we learned that absolute child poverty has risen sharply. The downward trend in relative child poverty inherited from Labour has halted. In-work poverty is…

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