A Tory MP, Nadhim Zahawi, has proposed limiting child benefit and child tax credit to the first two children. He is not proposing that this be retrospective i.e. families which already have three or more children will continue to be subsidised.
He has given a range of reasons around fairness, savings, and the way the benefits system operates for doing so.
Britain has one of Europe’s highest levels of large familes, of population density and of population growth. Society is grappling with the problems of growing pressure on housing, transport, education, health, green spaces and the green belt. Infrastructure and other costs for energy, water and other utilities are rising while we face challenging carbon emission limits in order to address climate change.
From a sustainability viewpoint, while families in poverty should be supported, we don’t think large families in general should be subsidied and welcome measures which may reduce the proportion of large families.