Child poverty to increase following Autumn Statement, warns IFS
Richard Johnstone | 1 December 2011
Statement has made it ‘inconceivable’ that the government will eradicate child
poverty by 2020, the Institute for Fiscal Studies has warned.
Osborne's announcements on November 29 would increase child poverty, the
economics think-tank said. The failure to match some
tax credits to inflation, and the reversal of decisions to raise child tax
credits, would add around 100,000 to the number
of children in poverty in 2012/13.
This follows warnings by the Child Poverty Action Group
that the decision to cancel an above-inflation rise in the child tax credit would lead to greater poverty.
executive Alison Garnham
said: ‘Warnings of a
bleak future of rising child poverty have not just been ignored, the government
has actively decided to let child poverty rise. This is not the fairness we
were promised and it will cost the nation dearly in years to come.’
In a post-Autumn Statement
briefing, IFS director Paul
Johnson said that the chancellor’s announcement of further cuts to public
spending in 2015/16 and 2016/17 would put
him ‘just on course’ to meet his so-called fiscal mandate. This states that the cyclically adjusted current budget should be balanced by the end of a rolling, five-year period.
to government expenditure of 0.9% in both years would form part of a seven-year contraction almost double any other public service spending cuts on record, IFS programme director Gemma
Tetlow revealed. Over seven years from 2010, spending will be cut by 16.2%, compared
with 9.3% over the seven years from 1975.
Tetlow added that, even with
the extra cuts, there is little room for manoeuvre
if Osborne is to meet his mandate.
IFS also revealed that the squeeze on incomes following the recession would lead
to more than a decade of falling living standards. Real median household incomes will be lower in 2015/16 than they were
in 2002/03, the analysis found.