The government’s indifference to child poverty

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I am genuinely quite shocked that the government has abolished the Child Poverty Unit.

I suppose I should not be: they have already tried to define child poverty out of existence,  of course. And they have reduced the staff dedicated to this issue, which was a core New Labour area of concern and where, to be fair, it achieved a lot. But abolishing the unit is not just a reorganisation of tasks, as the government will suggest. It is much more significant than that.

As anyone who has been involved in any form of management knows, what you manage matters. Simply naming an issue as being of concern directs resources towards it. Creating a measure does of itself change outcomes. Attention is focussed as a result.

The inverse is true. De-naming makes clear an issue is no longer important. Other things should take higher priority is the implication. Measures will not be noticed so much now.

But this is child poverty! For heaven's sake, what matters much more than that? We know that tackling child poverty has one of the best outcomes for overall well being. But apparently this government is no longer concerned about it.

I repeat that I am shocked by this. As a symbol of an uncaring, indifferent government this one is hard to beat.

And I regret the loss of well-being for every child that will have lesser life chances as a result. They are the real victims of this, and they will suffer as a result of government choice.