Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Social Justice Strategy aims to increase the number of families staying together

IDS makes his point
Work and Pensions Secretary Iain Duncan Smith has today launched the Government's Social Justice Strategy, with the publication of the report Social Justice: transforming lives.

A large part of the strategy is about supporting families, with the aim of reducing divorce and separation rates. The report talks of dealing with the 'risk factors' that can put pressure on relationships and lead to family breakdown, such as poverty, unemployment, educational failure, mental ill health and drug and alcohol dependency. The strategy sets out how the Government intends to tackle these factors.

Otherwise, the report lists three ways in which it says previous government policy has exacerbated the 'rising trend in family breakdown':
  • By penalising couples in the welfare benefits system;
  • By focusing resources on the consequences of relationship breakdown, rather than prevention of relationship breakdown; and
  • By "an antagonistic child maintenance system that does not encourage people to make family-based arrangements".
You can read IDS's speech here, and the report itself, here.

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