04 December 2015

Don’t forget Iain Duncan Smith this Christmas

UK Churches are encouraging people to add Iain Duncan Smith, Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, to their Christmas card list and include a personal greeting asking the minister to ensure that every family and child has enough this Christmas.

Paul Morrison, Policy Adviser for the Methodist Church, said: "The One More Card Campaign is an initiative by the Baptist Union, the Methodist Church, United Reformed Church and the Church of Scotland.  The campaign will show care both for the families affected by the changes to the benefit system and also towards those who run the system reflecting the important job they do.

"No-one should grow up in a family that does not have enough to afford the basics of life. It is a message that has particular resonance at Christmas and I am sure shared by people in and out of churches."

A number of UK faiths and churches have joined together to highlight the fact that measures contained within the Welfare Reform and Work Bill will break the historic link between the support that is offered to a family by the benefit system and the family's actual needs.   

The two child rule means that families with three or more children will receive the same support from Tax Credits or Universal Credit as a family with two children. The needs of the family will increase but the support offered will not.

The ruling means the link between earnings and the benefit cap will be broken. The maximum level of benefits a family can receive will not reflect the needs of the family.

Paul Morrison continued: "One More Card forms part of the Enough Campaign supported by many UK Churches. These campaigns have a simple message; a family's material needs, especially the needs of children, should be met were possible. This is a principle central to the benefit system and which the Welfare Reform and Work Bill currently before Parliament is proposing to change."

Editors Notes:

1 For more information on the One More Card Campaign visit:  http://www.Jointpublicissues.org.uk/onemorecard

2 To read the joint faith briefing on the two child limit visit:

3 The One More Card and Enough Campaigns have been created by theJoint Public Issues Team (JPIT).  The team combines the expertise of the Baptist Union, the Methodist Church and the United Reformed Church in the area of public issues. In March 2015, the Church of Scotland joined JPIT for a one year pilot partnership. The Team aims to enable our four Churches to work together in living out the gospel of Christ in the Church and in wider society. We aim to promote equality and justice by influencing those in power and by energising and supporting local congregations.

Further information on the Joint Pubic Issues Team can be found here:

4 Paul Morrison is available for interview - contact Mike Ivatt via email ivattm@methodistchurch.org.uk or on 0207 467 5191 or 07881783812.

For more information contact:

Michael Ivatt
Lead Media Officer
Methodist Church House
25 Marylebone Road, London NW1 5JR

T 0207 467 5191
M 07881 783812
F 020 7467 5229

E ivattm@methodistchurch.org.uk

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