Posts Tagged ‘supporting families’

The Tories have got tax right: they’ve just got marriage wrong

26/04/2011, 07:00:13 AM

by Peter Watt

My youngest sister just got married in South Africa. About 30 of our large family went for a holiday of a lifetime to celebrate the big event. We had an incredible time and it made me think once again about the importance and influence of our family. We provide each other with friendship, informal social care, safety, emotional support, counselling, nurturing, parenting and parenting advice, financial support and of course a sense of belonging. Of course, we aren’t alone in this. The family has to be one of the most important influences on everyone’s life.

It is for this reason that “supporting families” is something that all political parties claim as central to their social policy. At the last election, the Tories emphasised their flagship policy of recognising marriage in the tax system.

Rightly, Labour argued that this was not only simplistic but also discriminated against families that do not include a married couple. But we lost the election. And the budget saw the Tories take their first small steps in implementing their approach. There is no doubt that over the coming years they will continue to use the tax system to aggressively demonstrate their intent.


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