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Liam Byrne MP, Labour’s Shadow Work and Pensions Secretary, speaking in response to today’s child poverty announcement, said:
“This Government has decided that the best way to tackle the problem of child poverty is to run away from it.
“But they cannot escape the bottom line – this Government has created a perfect storm leaving thousands of families at sea.
“Iain Duncan Smith’s response is to tell hard-pressed families to simply get a new job, but there are five people chasing every vacancy - he has become the Marie Antoinette of British politics. While parents struggle to juggle the bills, he says; ‘let them eat cake’.”
Ed Balls MP, Labour’s Shadow Chancellor, commenting on the progress Labour made in government on child poverty, said:
"There was still much further to go, but I am proud that the last Labour government took over 1 million children out of poverty and enshrined in law a commitment to eradicate child poverty.
"But I fear all that progress is set to be undone by this Government's unfair and failing economic policies. With long term unemployment rising and deep cuts to tax credits and childcare support making thousands of parents better off quitting work there is a real risk that child poverty will now rise. It's no wonder that this Government is cynically trying to move the goalposts, despite what David Cameron promised before the general election.
"What we need is a plan to get the economy growing again, tax credits to make work pay and services like Sure Start to give every child, and not just some, the best start in life."