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Families face “decade of declining living standards”


Unemployed couples with children will be faced with a “decade of sharply declining living standards” due to cuts in benefits, according to anti poverty campaigners.

Research from the Joseph Rowntree Foundation (JRF) has found that a jobless couple with two children will be £221 short of what would be needed for an acceptable standard of living every week by 2020.

Thanks to George Osborne’s July Budget, which announced major cuts to benefits such as tax credits and the introduction of the National Living Wage means that jobless couples, loan parents (even those working full time) and parents with more than two children are set to see their living standards fall.

Julia Unwin, chief executive at the JRF said:
"The summer Budget has transformed the relationship between pay, benefits and work incentives. The National Living Wage is a game changer for some on low incomes as the new, higher rate will make work pay for more people.

"But the wage rise comes hand in hand with changes to in and out of work benefits. Families will only be able to make ends meet if they have two parents in full-time work, but those who are able to find extra work will face a difficult juggling act as they try and make longer hours fit around family life.
"Lone parents, even those working full time, and people who are searching for work face a decade of sharply declining living standards."

In a separate study, the Institute for Fiscal Studies (IFS) found that 13 million families in the UK would lose £260 a year on average thanks to the cuts.

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