Budget Resolutions and Economic Situation

Part of Amendment of the Law – in the House of Commons at 1:27 pm on 13th March 2008.

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Photo of Danny Alexander Danny Alexander Liberal Democrat, Inverness, Nairn, Badenoch and Strathspey 1:27 pm, 13th March 2008

The hon. Lady makes an important point about London and lone parents, and I want to come back to that because she is right to say that there are specific issues affecting London that have to be addressed if the target is to be met. I was making a broader point. It is not that no progress has been made; the point is that, if we look at the Budget figures and the amount of extra resources being spent on the issue, we see that the Budget will be remembered as the time when the Government abandoned their target of halving child poverty by 2010.

I wish to make it clear that we Liberal Democrats are committed to the target of abolishing child poverty by 2020, and to halving it by 2010, but according to figures from the Institute for Fiscal Studies, the Government are expected to miss their 2010 target by some 450,000 children. Those are children who would no longer be in poverty if the target were met, but who are still in poverty because of the slow progress that has been made.