The National Children’s Bureau has issued its reaction to the Chancellor’s spring statement.
Anna Feuchtwang, Chief Executive of the National Children’s Bureau said:
‘The Chancellor did his best to paint a rosy picture of the country’s economic outlook but in reality far too little of that prosperity reaches the children and families that need it most.
‘On the one hand there is a cash crisis within councils, so that managers, faced with ever increasing numbers of children needing their help, prioritise those who are in dire circumstances. In this climate, services like youth clubs, children’s centres and support for families who have disabled children are the first to face the axe.
‘On top of this, there are serious questions over whether poorer children are being left behind in Theresa May’s Britain. During a bitterly cold winter, family budgets have already been hit hard just trying to keep the house warm, and on top of this benefits cuts mean many families struggle to make ends meet. Government policy simply doesn’t recognise the impact poverty has on children as they grow up.
‘The mental health, wellbeing and happiness of children should be a top priority. Here the Government has identified measures that could promote good mental health and bring about improved support if a young person becomes mentally unwell.
‘But without significant investment from the Chancellor, the problem is effectively being kicked into the long grass. Only a small number of children, in a few areas are likely to see improvements from 2022. A lack of urgency and ambition by the Government is failing the children who need help now.’