24 MPs sign motion calling to reconsider two-child benefits limit

The motion expresses 'incredulity’ that the government hasn’t assessed correlations between the two-child limit and child poverty levels

MPs sign early day motion two-child limit

A motion signed by 24 MPs has called on the two-child limit to be reconsidered while expressing disbelief that the government has not assessed the correlation between child poverty and the Tories benefit cap as new research came to light. 

Tabled by Labour MP Mary Kelly Foy, the Early Day Motion highlighted research from the End Child Poverty Coalition which revealed how some of the most vulnerable families are those hardest hit by the two-child limit. 

Introduced in April 2017 by the Tories supposedly as an incentive to get parents into work, the policy prevents households from claiming universal credit or child tax credit for a third or subsequent child.

Concerns were raised by the government’s own Work and Pensions Committee in 2019 which recommended that the policy be abandoned, warning that the limit would increase the number of children in poverty and disproportionately affect minority groups. 

The motion highlighted figures from the End Child Poverty research which showed that 20% of all households impacted by the policy are families with at least one disabled child, just over 87,500 households, while a further 25% of families impacted are single-parent households with a third child under three. 

One in ten children are impacted by the two-child limit, with families losing out on up to £3,455 per child a year. 

The motion “expresses incredulity that no assessment of the potential correlation between the proportion of children living in households affected by the two-child limit and levels of child poverty has been made by the Department for Work and Pensions; and calls for the two-child limit to be reconsidered”.

Last year Keir Starmer said Labour would keep the two-child benefit cap despite unease from members of his shadow cabinet. 

List of the 24 MPs who have signed the motion: 

Mary Kelly Foy, Labour

George Galloway, Workers Party of Britain

Jon Trickett, Labour

Richard Burgon, Labour

Kate Osborne, Labour

Jeremy Corbyn, Independent

Zarah Sultana, Labour

Dr Philippa Whitford, SNP

Claudia Webbe, Independent

Imran Hussain, Labour

Jonathan Edwards, Independent

Kim Johnson, Labour

John McDonnell, Labour

Ian Byrne, Labour

Mick Whitley, Labour

Apsana Begum, Labour

Rebecca Long Bailey, Labour

Dawn Butler, Labour

Bell Ribeiro-Addy, Labour

Clive Lewis, Labour

Beth Winter, Labour

 Caroline  Lucs, Green Party

Olivia Blake, Labour

Ian Mearns, Labour 

Hannah Davenport is news reporter at Left Foot Forward

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