According to The Telegraph,
Maternity and paternity pay will not be protected from the Government’s new benefits cap, David Cameron has said, fuelling concerns that it could be cut in the future.
The Prime Minister said that the only welfare spending that was exempt from a new overall cap announced in the Autumn Statement last week would be the state pension.
The comments raised speculation that maternity and paternity pay could be cut if spending on benefits threatened to breach the cap once it is in force, although these fears were downplayed by Government sources.
It came as Rachel Reeves, the shadow Work and Pensions secretary, clarified comments she made on national television, which suggested the state pension could also be included in a welfare cap if Labour wins the next election.
George Osborne, the Chancellor, said that a cap on total benefits spending would start from 2015, with the precise limit being set out in spring next year.
This is a sign of the straits the UK finds itself in. but what I found interesting was this:
New mothers are legally entitled to a weekly rate equal to 90 per cent of your average weekly earnings for the first six weeks of their baby’s life. They receive £136.78 a week for the remaining 33 weeks.
New fathers are presently allowed to take up to two weeks off work to look after their babies. The statutory rate is £136.78 a week, or 90 per cent of the father’s average weekly earnings of that is less.
My question is why this government benefit exists at all.
Paying for babies under “welfare benefits” is of course supposed to give the little mites something to live on. But why pay people who have jobs to have children?
Either they want to anyway, or they don’t. And if they don’t, you can’t pay them enough. Sweden has shown that, since they started the most generous parenthood benefits in the world, by my recollection, sometime in the seventies.
Socialism always seems to be the best contraception money can buy, either by removing the central role of the family and replacing it with government, or by removing the hope for a better future that makes people want to have children. Every socialist state has crashing demographics.
So I say remove the parenthood benefits, do. And the welfare benefits too. And then maybe there will be hope for Britain without taking in a large, indigestible group of immigrants.