Women & Children

Axe falls hardest on single mothers

TomAnalysis conducted on behalf of the TUC shows lone parents will be hardest hit by the Government cuts to public services.

The research says that single parents, 92% of whom are women, are set to lose the equivalent of a staggering 18.5% of their net income in services. This figure is more than double that which couple parents will lose.

This comes on top of the 8.5% of their income single mothers are expected to lose from changes to taxes and benefits.

It is not only lone mothers who are being disproportionately hit, single working age women and single female pensioners are also facing bigger losses as a result of cuts than their male counterparts.

Whilst a working age single man will lose around 3% of his net income because of spending cuts, a woman in the same situation will lose around 4%. For pensioners, there is an even greater gap with a single man losing approximately 5.9% of his income, where as a single female pensioner faces the loss of 7% of her net income.

The analysis determines the ‘cash value’ of public services for different households and is reproduced by the Fawcett Society, who present the graph above in their report on the impact of the Government’s economic policy on women.

The Acting Chief Executive of the Fawcett Society called on the Chancellor to review their policies so that “lone mothers do not shoulder more than their fare share of the cuts.”

In response to allegations that they’re reducing the deficit on the back of single parents and women, the Government insists that “Fairness is central to the Government’s strategy for tackling the deficit”

The TUC says “The Government’s savage austerity programme, including £18bn of cuts to social security and welfare and hundreds of thousands of job losses in the public sector will clearly hit women and families hard – particularly pregnant women, women pensioners and single mothers.”

The original research from Tim Horton and Howard Reed, ‘The Distributional Impact of the 2010 spending review’ can be found here and the TUC document, ‘Where the money goes: How we benefit from public services’, can be read here.

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