Government breaks silence over scrapping 'cruel' DWP two-child benefit cap

The government has refused to rule out SCRAPPING the "cruel" two-child benefit cap as 1.6 million children miss out on £288 a month. New research from the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) shows that 1.6 million children are denied support because of the two-child limit.

Charities claim the cap puts them at risk of “losing their life chances”. John McDonnell, former Labour shadow chancellor and MP for Hayes and Harlington, has said he plans to table amendments to Rachel Reeves’ first budget, expected in the autumn, to push the government to abolish the policy.

Alison Garnham, chief executive of Child Poverty Action Group, said: "The PM came to office pledging a bold, ambitious child poverty-reduction plan and there's no way to deliver on that promise without scrapping the two-child limit, and fast."

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Work and Pensions Secretary of State Liz Kendall said today: "Too many children are growing up in poverty and this is a stain on our society. We will work to give every child the best start in life by delivering our manifesto commitment to implement an ambitious strategy to reduce child poverty.

"I will hold critical meetings with charities and experts next week to get this urgent work under way." Ms Garnham added: "Children are losing their life chances to the two-child limit now – they can't wait for the new government to align every star before the policy is scrapped.

"This is not the time for procrastination or prevarication." Joseph Howes, chair of the End Child Poverty Coalition and chief executive of Buttle UK said: “The two-child limit just has to go. If the aim is to reduce child poverty, there is no way for the new Labour government to keep this policy in place when the evidence shows that the number of children impacted is increasing year on year.

“Children living in poverty cannot wait any longer – this shameful policy must be scrapped, the time for action is now.”