Amendment of the Law

Part of the debate – in the House of Commons at 12:56 pm on 25th March 2010.

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Photo of Yvette Cooper Yvette Cooper The Secretary of State for Work and Pensions 12:56 pm, 25th March 2010

This party is increasing child tax credit-in this Budget for one and two-year-olds-because we think that parents need more help and more choice when their children are young. We want to increase help for pensioners and families who need it in this Budget, even at a difficult time. We want to increase the child tax credit, but the Conservatives want to cut it and to bring back the married man's allowance instead. We want to help all parents of toddlers. We want to help the married mum, but we also want to help the widowed mum, the single mum, the divorced mum, the dads and the grandparents if they are looking after the children too. We want to help mums who go out to work part time or full time, not just those who stay at home, because we know that families come in all shapes and sizes, and that a toddler can run one ragged whatever form their family takes. That is why we will support all families and will not discriminate against the families that the Conservative party simply does not like.

We want to give more help to those on the lowest incomes, whereas the Conservatives want to give the most help to the married men on the highest pay. We support the child trust fund, because we think that kids should have the chance of some family savings and assets being put by on their behalf, and we want to help families to do that. The only thing that the Conservative party wants to offer to families who want to build up assets for their kids is a cut in inheritance tax on millionaires' estates. I should point out to the shadow Chancellor that, contrary to his own experience, there are not many families in Britain who are due to inherit a millionaire's estate.

The country faces a big choice-a serious plan for growth and deficit reduction from the Chancellor who has steered Britain through the banking crisis and the worst global recession for generations, or a set of political gimmicks from the student politicians who would put our country's future at risk. The Labour party will not put our country's future at risk, and I commend the Budget to the House.

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