All Kids Count

Here in the UK, we believe that every child should have the best start in life. This means access to free health care, a good education, and a childhood free from poverty. We wouldn’t turn away a sick child from our hospitals or stop them going to school. But the two-child limit denies families the support they need from our social security system when they experience tough times - trapping kids in poverty.

We need to help children thrive, by supporting parents to raise happy, healthy children – especially during the first years of a child’s life, when foundations are laid for their future development. 





It’s right to support families when they need it most. Our government should lift the two-child limit and help all children thrive.


Organisations calling for the two-child limit to be lifted

'As a society we are proud of looking after the most vulnerable with compassion and this includes all our children being able to have the best start in life.

No-one has a crystal ball to know what illness or redundancy or low-pay may face you in ten years' time, the family you plan and long for may face unforeseen problems, if that happened we would all want to be able to rely on a system to support our family back onto their feet.

4in10 wants to see an end to the two-child limit because we believe it is not ok for some children in a family to be considered acceptable to qualify for benefits, while others in the same family are left without. It goes to the very heart of the fairness we expect from our support system, it leaves families trapped in poverty and hurts children’s life chances.'

4 in 10 London’s child poverty campaign network

'Every child should have a safe and happy childhood.

It is unacceptable that today over 4 million children in the UK are living in poverty, where heating and eating is a very real choice for families with young children. Growing up in a family locked into poverty can be pressured, painful and isolating for children and has serious implications for both their well-being and their life chances.

The two-child limit will lead to more children growing up in poverty and will increase the already high poverty risk of larger families. We urge the Government to drop the two-child limit immediately.'

Action for Children

'At AVA, we oppose the two-child limit because it will hurt many women experiencing domestic abuse and other forms of gender based violence, by arbitrarily reducing the money they have to support their children.'

AVA (Against Violence and Abuse)

'As an extremely busy Welfare Advice Centre, we have already seen the dreadful consequences of the two-child cap on the many families we help. Many of our clients have larger families. The effects are already felt and we are seriously concerned about the future, as the situation will only deteriorate. We therefore, fully support this campaign, on behalf of all these current and potential large families.'

Agudas Israel Community Services

'Amnesty International UK supports the All Kids Count campaign’s call for an to end the “two-child limit”. The UK government should immediately repeal this arbitrary and discriminatory policy which breaches its human rights obligations and disproportionately impacts on faith communities and the poorest members of society.'

Amnesty International UK

'The two-child policy disproportionately affects faith communities and the poorest in our society. It is unfair and regressive as it breaks the link between what a child needs and the support it is given, placing innocent children at a gross disadvantage. It punishes those who suffer a sudden change in circumstances through no fault of their own – a death, redundancy, or onset of a disability. This punitive policy should be reviewed.'

The Board of Deputies of British Jews 

'The British Association of Social Workers Northern Ireland (BASW NI) is fundamentally opposed to the inclusion of a two-child limit for families receiving Universal Credit. The limit will serve to increase the reach and deepen the impact of poverty across all regions of the UK. BASW NI also opposes the “rape clause” exemption to the two-child limit. It is unreasonable and degrading to subject a woman to disclose an incident of rape to a third party to access benefits. The rape clause highlights the crass austerity of the two-child limit which is unbefitting a modern, just society.'

British Association of Social Workers Northern Ireland

'Body & Soul support children and families whose lives have been devastated by childhood trauma and adversity. We know too well how early experiences of abuse, neglect, illness, bereavement, and family breakdown can have a catastrophic impact on children's long-term health and happiness, increasing children's risk of obesity, heart disease, depression, unemployment, poverty, and suicide across their life-time. The two-child limit exacerbates these risks for the children we support, driving them and their families further into an ongoing cycle of poverty and pain.'

Body & Soul

'The two-child limit assumes that decisions about family size can be neatly planned, yet no method of contraception is 100% reliable, and indeed the majority of women we care for who are experiencing an unexpected pregnancy were using contraception when they conceived. The policy expects parents to be able to plan their finances for their child’s lifetime, yet changes in circumstances can render the most carefully planned families susceptible to sudden and devastating poverty. It has a disproportionate impact on women in Northern Ireland as they do not have access to legal abortion at home, and we are concerned that women across the UK are ending otherwise wanted pregnancies because of this regressive policy.'


'Buttle UK supports the All Kids Count campaign to end the two-child limit. Child poverty is an increasing problem in the UK, and our grant officers hear of its personal effect on children on a daily basis, providing Chances for Children grants for basic items and activities they shouldn’t have to do without.

We oppose a measure that looks set to increase the number of children living in poverty by hundreds of thousands. We believe all children deserve a fair chance to fulfil their potential and reducing child poverty is something that benefits all of society, not just those affected. The two-child limit runs counter to both of these aims.'

Buttle UK

'The two-child limit contradicts the principle that every child is of equal dignity. We recall the Charter of the Rights of the Family (1983): "The activities of public authorities and private organizations which attempt in any way to limit the freedom of couples in deciding about their children constitute a grave offense against human dignity and justice." The policy contradicts successive governments’ commitments to give all children the best possible start in life. We believe that removing the two-child limit would be consistent with honouring these commitments.'

Caritas Social Action Network

'When children grow up poor they miss out. Poverty restricts children’s opportunities, and can mean they are left behind. The effects of this can stay with these children throughout their lives. The two-child limit is driving up child poverty. It breaks the important link between what families need and the support they get. All parents want their kids to have the best childhood they can, and all kids deserve that. It’s right to support families and help children thrive. The government must lift the two-child limit.'

Child Poverty Action Group

'Most parents plan to be around to support their children into adulthood. But over 20,000 families a year face the dreadful blow of one or both parents dying while the children are still young. The surviving parent has to juggle childcare, work, finances and decision-making on their own, while coping with their grief and that of their children. The Childhood Bereavement Network believes that grieving children should not be further disadvantaged based on the size of their remaining family.'

Childhood Bereavement Network

'The Childhood Trust is opposed to the two-child limit policy because it is unfair on the grounds of discriminating against third and subsequent children born after April 2017. This policy will create unnecessary hardship for many families and should be abandoned immediately.'

The Childhood Trust

'No caring society can accept that some children, but not others, deserve the support of the state to meet their needs. The two-child benefit limit discriminates both against poorer parents and children themselves, needlessly creating stress and deprivation that damages family life and childhood. Our welfare system should be a safety net for any and all families who need it, not a mechanism to manipulate the lives and decisions of the least well-off.'

Children England

'We are concerned that the two-child limit is having damaging consequences for low income families who are struggling to make ends meet. The Children’s Society supports calls for an end to the two-child limit, as we believe that this policy, along with a number of other changes to the benefits system are making it increasingly difficult for families to cover everyday costs, pushing them into poverty and closer to crisis point.'

The Children's Society

'In more than 20 years of work with families in poverty, we know the impossible choices families are forced to make. Children are not immune from the strain financial worries place on their families – relationally, practically and emotionally. The number of children already living in poverty in the UK is unacceptable. It is not right that children should bear the brunt of this policy. Like everyone else, they do not choose to be born and deserve the opportunity to flourish. We would challenge the Government to look again.'

Christians Against Poverty

'We believe that children are a blessing, not a burden – and that a third or fourth child is no less precious than the first or second. The Government’s two-child limit goes against this fundamental principle and is pushing many families and children into poverty. It is simply not right that some children get support and others don’t. The two-child limit must be lifted as part of a concerted effort to reverse the rise in child poverty.'

The Church of England

'Citizens Advice Scotland is deeply concerned about the impact of the two-child limit on low income families. Since the introduction of the policy, Scotland’s CAB network has advised clients affected by the two-child limit who have been left struggling to pay for essentials, including taking out loans they cannot repay, and accruing unmanageable rent and council tax arrears. Lone parents have been particularly hard hit by the change. CAS would urge the UK Government to reconsider the policy in its entirety.'

Citizens Advice Scotland

'The two-child limit is a discriminatory policy that harms the economic and social rights of our local community. In his investigation into extreme poverty in the UK, Professor Philip Alston highlighted the two-child limit as one factor in the vastly disproportionate impact of austerity policies on single parents and women. The policy also takes an unfair toll on our local, highly-diverse, community, as Newham has the largest average household size of any London borough. This is a blunt and unjust policy and we are happy to support the campaign to abolish the two-child limit.'

Community Links

'The End Child Poverty coalition believes that, through ambitious policy making and determined political will, all children in the UK can grow up free from the constraints of poverty. This is why we are opposed to the imposition of the two-child limit. It is a policy that condemns hundreds of thousands of children to a life trapped by poverty – restricting their day-to-day lives and their futures. This campaign is fighting for a basic principle of what our society understands to be just – equality for all children, regardless of where they come in their family.'

End Child Poverty

'The Equality Trust is supporting this essential campaign. The two-child limit is deeply unfair and penalises poor people in such a fundamental way that violates their private and family lives.'

The Equality Trust

'Family Action supports families in all shapes and sizes. In our experience, family life is rarely completely straightforward, predictable or always the result of choices made. Instead, we know that family life can change quickly as a result of e.g. losing a job, having an illness, relationship or work stress or mental health issues. We are all vulnerable to changes in life circumstances and we may all suddenly require extra help and support. Seen against that reality, the two-child limit seems to be an entirely arbitrary policy which only serves to push children in larger, poor families deeper into poverty.'

Family Action

'Poverty is a gendered issue. Women comprise nine in ten single parents, and almost half of single parents live in poverty – and cuts to public spending have hit women, especially women of colour, hardest. The two-child limit contributes to that. It also fails to recognise the fact that all children matter, and deserve a good start in life. Fawcett supports this campaign to remove the unfair limit, and lift thousands of women out of poverty.'

Fawcett Society

'We have seen amongst the families we help, it become increasingly difficult for them to make ends meet, let alone have any disposable income with which to repay debts. In parallel with this trend has been an increase in priority debts: eg rent, council tax. For larger families a significant contributor to this unwelcome trend has been the benefit cap and the two-child limit. We would welcome an end to the two-child limit because it would also send a message that every child is equally valuable, cared for and supported.'

Frontline Debt Advice

'The two-child limit can be financially devastating for single parents and their children. Calls to Gingerbread's helpline show the cruel impact in pushing these families into deeper poverty. At its extreme we have had calls from single parents considering a termination of a pregnancy of their third child. Gingerbread opposes the two-child limit and wholeheartedly supports the campaign against this policy.'


'This devastating Government policy will increase financial difficulties, stress and have harmful social consequences. The UK is the sixth richest country in the world. It is a scandal that while families have experienced cuts, tax breaks have been given to the richest earners and corporations. We believe this pernicious policy was created to stigmatise those in need of support and reinforce a notion of an ‘undeserving poor’. GMB rejects this and instead supports a universal welfare state which does not discriminate against children. Our members also understand that families’ circumstances can change at short notice. GMB proudly backs this campaign.'


'Greater Manchester is home to some of the highest levels of child poverty in the UK. There is a huge determination to tackle this issue within the city region, but efforts are hampered by central government policies that act to drive up poverty and hurt households already vulnerable to poverty. The two-child limit is a prime example of that. The governments needs to act now and bring the two-child limit to an end.'

Greater Manchester Poverty Action

'Human Rights Watch supports the All Kids Count campaign’s call to end the “two-child limit” policy. Our research has found that the “two-child limit” policy, together with other deep cuts to social security support to families with children living on low incomes, means children are going hungry and families’ reliance on food aid is rising. The two-child limit policy is inherently discriminatory and inconsistent with the UK government’s human rights duty to ensure everyone, including every child, has access to adequate food.”

Human Rights Watch

'Inclusion Scotland believes that the two-child limit is morally wrong and a breach of the UK’s international treaty obligations, specifically the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child which states that ALL children are entitled to Social Security support. As a national Disabled People’s Organisation we are also aware that the two-child limit has a disproportionate impact on families with disabled parents and/or children. Research by the New Policy Institute and others shows that once the costs of disability are taken into account nearly half of all the households impacted by poverty contain a disabled adult or child. The two-child limit thus exacerbates the inequality that already exists.'

Inclusion Scotland

'Every child should be allowed the chance to grow and flourish without discrimination. The impact of the two-child limit has been proved to be both cruel and devastating. The Independent Food Aid Network is glad to support the All Kids Count campaign and urges the Government to urgently reverse this punitive policy.'

Independent Food Aid Network

'Judaism sees every child as a blessing and worthy of society's care and support. Regardless of the circumstances of their birth, every child should be equally welcomed. No child should be stigmatised by society for being one child too many. No child should be left without basic provision for their needs. Children are our investment in the future. Families are creating our future, and should be supported and not sanctioned in this work. This is why we support the 'All Kids Count' campaign and call for an end to the two-child limit.'


'As a community traditionally characterised by larger households for cultural and religious reasons, we place particular value on the vitality and vibrancy of large families. Consequently this draconian policy will have an especially disproportionate impact on our Community. Families finding themselves through no fault of their own, in need of the safety net that the welfare system is designed to provide, will face serious destitution and the risk of family break up. Families are good for society, and society should be good to families. We firmly believe that irrespective of race, faith or background, every child has innate value and that ‘All Kids Count’.'

Jewish Community Council of Gateshead

'We believe that every child should have the best start in life. But low-paid, unstable jobs and high housing costs mean that families are increasingly being pulled into poverty, whether in or out of work. Our social security system should act as an anchor for families when they experience tough times, but the two-child limit denies them support when they most need it and is one of the biggest policy drivers behind the expected rise in poverty over the next few years. The two-child limit should be lifted before it tightens the grip of poverty on more children during the crucial years of their lives.'

Joseph Rowntree Foundation

'The odds are stacked against children who grow up in poverty. The evidence is clear: they’re more likely to fall behind at school; more likely to suffer with ill health; more likely to struggle to find a well-paid job as adults; and even more likely to die prematurely.

Jubilee+ opposes the two-child limit because it will push tens of thousands of children into poverty and make the lives of many more children already facing poverty even harder. That’s why we’re supporting the All Kids Count campaign to see it abolished.'


'Thousands of families are being trapped in poverty as a result of unsustainable cuts to our social safety net that tear apart the fabric of our communities. The two-child limit on social benefits and other devastatingly regressive measures have disproportionately affected the people that need society’s support the most. The UK has the means to ensure no-one falls below an adequate standard of living, and the social security system must live up to it. The two-child limit must end as a stepping stone towards a truly free and fair Britain.'

Just Fair

'Our social security system should lift families out of poverty and give children the support they need to thrive. The two-child rule denies help to children who are already locked in poverty, simply because they have older brothers and sisters. It breaks the basic principle that the support offered to families should be linked to their needs. We support this campaign because the two-child rule is wrong in principle, is based on false assumptions and will lock hundreds of thousands of children into poverty. It is incompatible with any vision of a just and compassionate social security system.'

Methodist Church, Church of Scotland, URC and The Baptist Union of Great Britain

'At Mind, we support the urgent call for Government to lift the two-child limit and help all children have the best start in life. We are deeply concerned that the two-child limit denies families much needed support. Our social security system should provide proper support for all of us when help is most needed, not trapping children and families in poverty. Growing up in poverty, debt, poor housing and with social disadvantage can all have an impact on mental health. Children from low income families are at highest risk of mental health problems - the risk is three times that of those from the highest income families.'


'The two-child limit fails to alleviate poverty, and instead pushes vulnerable children and families further into poverty. It disproportionately impacts those in low socio-economic groups and religious minorities, particularly Muslims. Ultimately, this policy unfairly penalises children, who have no control over the size of their family. Child poverty, which is already high in some Muslim communities, has damaging lasting impacts on children’s health and wellbeing.'

The Muslim Council of Britain

'The National Board of Catholic Women considers that the two-child limit policy punishes children unfairly and pushes them into greater poverty. It is discriminatory against third and subsequent children and undermines the dignity of the family as enshrined in the Charter on the Family 1983. It affects women disproportionately, especially those suffering domestic abuse, and may push more women into having abortions. It is also a shortsighted measure as children affected by poverty in early life often do less well at school and earn less as adults. Philip Alston, the UN rapporteur, likened it to China’s one child policy! We ask this government to think again.'  

The National Board of Catholic Women 

'NCB believes that all children, regardless of decisions made by their parents, have the right to grow up free from poverty. Ensuring entitlement to benefits is based on need rather than family size will help ensure children are protected from the damaging effects of poverty and help enable them to thrive.'

National Children's Bureau

‘The North East Child Poverty Commission believes that all children should have an equal chance in life, yet the two-child limit clearly makes that goal even harder to achieve. Child poverty levels in some parts of the North East already stand at almost 40%, and the evidence is clear that this policy will make what is already an unacceptable situation even worse. The two-child limit also completely fails to recognise that many women will have little choice over the number of babies they have – and it’s completely wrong for their children to be penalised for this. The North East Child Poverty Commission is proud to stand alongside so many other national organisations campaigning to put an end to this policy.’

North East Child Poverty Commission 

'The Westminster government’s decision to impose a two-child limit on benefit payments not only stigmatises mothers but sets apart siblings. Anything which sends the implicit message that a child is unwanted, unvalued or less important surely cannot be defended? This policy is having a profoundly negative impact on family life, as well as wider implications for society. It is the worst kind of government policy – judgemental, not based on evidence and is punishing those very families who already live in poverty after years of welfare cuts and austerity.'

One Parent Families Scotland

'Pearls of Peace women's community group in Northampton is opposed to the two-child limit. Children are seen in Islam as a blessing not a burden. We believe in bringing up our children to be healthy - mentally, physically and spiritually - and to make a positive contribution to family, community and society. The time, effort and attention given to bringing up children should be valued and supported by the government, which is why we need a safety net for all children to enable families to fulfil this vital role.'

Pearls of Peace

'We are a society that believes in justice and compassion. Yet a policy like the two-child limit acts contrary to these shared beliefs, and does nothing but tighten the grip of poverty on family’s lives. The decision to implement this policy was made not only in contravention of all warnings about its impact on child poverty, but also represented a disregarding of one of the most fundamental tenets of our society: that we believe in protecting each other from harm. If we’re serious about protecting the life chances of children across the UK, the two-child limit must end.'

The Poverty Alliance

'Rape Crisis England & Wales member Centres are seeing a marked increase in sexual violence survivors seeking support from their specialist advocacy services around issues related to poverty. It's clear the current welfare agenda is having severely detrimental effects on women already living with the long-term, wide-ranging health and social impacts of rape and sexual abuse.

From our frontline experience, we know it’s near-impossible for a survivor to engage meaningfully in counselling to recover from her experiences, or consider entering a lengthy criminal justice process, if she’s worrying about feeding her children or keeping a roof over their heads.

The two-child tax credit limit is punitive and discriminatory, and the so-called ‘rape clause’ completely fails to recognise the challenges or impacts of disclosing. This is why we’re part of the All Kids Count campaign.'

Rape Crisis England & Wales

'Through our work with newly-recognised and resettled refugees who have fled war, torture and persecution, we know that many of our clients struggle with the financial impact of the two-child limit policy - just at the point when they are trying to rebuild their lives. Our clients have very limited knowledge of welfare benefits policy. It can be difficult to understand why some children receive support while others do not. The two-child limit hurts vulnerable people and targets children – it’s time for it to go.'

The Refugee Council

'The RCM opposed the introduction of the cap on child tax credits because we believed this policy to be unfair, inequitable and invasive. Our concerns have been more than borne out by recent research which shows that the impact of the cap will be to push 300,000 children into poverty and a further million children into deeper poverty. We therefore fully support the All Kids Count campaign and call on the Government to end the divisive two-child limit.'

The Royal College of Midwives

'The impact of poverty on children can be devastating – not only to their physical health in terms of increased risk of malnutrition, respiratory problems from poor housing and infection – but also their mental health. The two-child limit for universal credit and tax credits is a regressive measure and will lead to an additional 300,000 children in poverty. This must be reversed if Government takes the health of this country’s children seriously. Poverty makes children ill, and in the severest of cases, poverty kills.'

The Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health

'The Scottish Campaign on Rights to Social Security, a coalition of over 40 organisations, advocates for a reformed social security system. We believe social security payment rates should be set at a level where no one is left in poverty and that respect for human rights and dignity should be the cornerstone of our social security system. The two-child limit is pushing families into greater poverty. It adds to measures which include a freeze on social security payments, tighter limits on housing support and the introduction of an overall Benefit Cap, moving away from the needs-based principles on which the British social security system is based. We believe strongly that the government should abandon this policy immediately.'

Scottish Campaign on Welfare Reform

'The Scottish Out of School Care Network believes that All Kids Count. The “two-child limit” is a breach of the UN Convention on The Rights of the Child and is certainly not in children’s best interests. It will increase child poverty and all the known ill effects of this, which can stay for a lifetime. And imagine being a child growing up and finding out society put a lesser value on you than your older siblings? It is a breach of human rights to put mothers who have experienced the trauma of rape to experience further distress through the disclosure requirement to access financial support. Family circumstances can change suddenly, through bereavement, job losses, relationship difficulties etc. so everyone may, one day, need the safety net that social security provides, and this should include all children.'

The Scottish Out of School Care Network

'The Family Cap [two-child limit] is a policy that actively pushes women and children into poverty, and we know that women and children’s experiences of domestic abuse are intrinsically linked to their experiences of poverty. Such a policy has no place in our society and it must be abolished. Further, the rape clause, which forces women to disclose rape in order to receive welfare, is inhumane and completely lacking in any understanding of sexual violence or domestic abuse. Scottish Women’s Aid, along with our sister organisations, will continue to work towards ending violence against women and children and will speak out against policies we see directly hindering that goal.'

Scottish Women's Aid

'The Scottish Independent Advocacy Alliance (SIAA) supports All Kids Count, and backs its call to end the discriminatory ‘two-child limit’. Independent advocates are human rights defenders. The ‘two-child limit’ – which lacks humanity and compassion and breaches the UK Government’s human rights obligations – runs counter to the guiding principles of SIAA and our members. It is a punitive policy which removes financial support based not on a fair and transparent assessment of need, but on an arbitrary measure of family-size. Childhood should be a time of safety and security. The ‘two-child limit’ will increase the number of children living in poverty, further marginalising the vulnerable people and families our social security system is intended to support.'

Scottish Independent Advocacy Alliance

'The Scottish Council for Voluntary Organisations (SCVO), many of our members, and organisations across the voluntary sector, are calling on the UK Government to immediately repeal the two-child limit. Social security is both a human right and a condition for the fulfilment of other rights. The two-child limit pushes families and children into poverty, with an additional 300,000 children expected to be pushed into poverty by 2024. This is unacceptable. Similarly, the policy can be a financial barrier for women and children trying to escape abuse and requiring women to disclose trauma in exchange for payments is both unjustifiable and incompatible with human rights. Urgent action is needed to repeal the two-child limit and create a system that respects, protects, and fulfils everyone’s right to social security.'


‘The government’s decision to introduce the two-child limit when claiming benefits is catastrophic for low-income families. We oppose this policy because it will further plunge already stretched families into poverty, with children the first ones to lose out. It may have the effect of contributing to abusive and controlling relationships, restricting the available options of victims and causing mothers to turn to sexual exploitation through prostitution or crime in order to provide for themselves and their families. When social services are set up to heighten vulnerability and restrict independence, these are systems that are failing. We call on the government to abolish this policy and provide a fair benefits system for those who need them.’

Solace Women's Aid

'Everyday StepChange Debt Charity supports families in financial difficulty. All families need support at one time or another and tax credits should be there when they most need help. The two-child limit will increase child poverty and hold children back. Every child deserves a great start in life and turning some children away from help is not consistent with our values as a society. By reversing the two-child limit, the government can end a poverty trap and stop further harm being done..'

StepChange Debt Charity

'As the only UK charity dedicated to raising awareness of economic abuse and transforming responses to it, Surviving Economic Abuse (SEA) opposes the two-child limit. Women experiencing economic abuse often rely on children's benefits simply as a means of survival for their children and themselves. The policy exacerbates women’s and children’s poverty by reducing family income and increasing barriers to escaping abuse. The provision of payment for a subsequent child born following rape forces women to disclose sexual violence in circumstances not of their choosing, and fails to recognise that partners forcibly restrict women’s rights to birth control.'

Surviving Economic Abuse

'The injustice of the two-child limit falls heavily on this family of five who did not know about it until they gave birth to their third child and applied for benefits and whose mother, without a British passport, is also denied all social security. They are homeless, living in temporary council accommodation, and at risk of being forced into the private rented sector in London where rents are prohibitive. The two-child limit policy is compounding the poverty of many families like this, and must be stopped before it does more harm.'

Taxpayers Against Poverty

'The Trussell Trust is proud to support the All Kids Count campaign – no child should ever have to face going hungry, and by restricting the amount of financial support families are entitled to, the government’s two child limit policy will push more families to need food banks. We need real change now – the policy must be reversed and every child supported to ensure they are given the best start in life.'

The Trussell Trust

'The two-child limit for social security breaks the fundamental link with need, poverty will inevitably rise as low -income families lose support of up to £2,780 a year. Child poverty levels are already high at 4.1 million. The policy is expected to put 300,000 children into poverty by 2023. Every child matters – the order of your birth determining whether you receive financial assistance or not is absurd. The two- child limit in social security needs to be abolished immediately.'


'All children should be given the opportunity to thrive and it is a fundamental principle of our society that we help people when they need it most. The two-child limit breaks this principle and the consequences are devastating. Turn2us have spoken to people who are now struggling to keep on going, a situation that feels all the more arbitrary because they have worked all their lives until their family was hit by crisis. Now in their time of need the system they have supported has failed them.'


‘Poverty is a trap that locks families into a cycle of deprivation, jeopardising a child’s right to a happy, healthy and fulfilled future. Unicef UK is concerned that the two-child-limit unfairly penalises children for decisions and actions that are far beyond their control. We believe the policy does not adhere to the UN Convention of the Rights of the Child – which states that governments must provide financial support to families in need of assistance, that the convention applies to all children, regardless of their ethnicity, gender, religion, or family birth order, and that the best interests of the child must be a priority. It is therefore only right and fair that the government acts now and lifts the limit.’

Unicef UK

'At UNISON all kids count. The two-child limit is the worst kind of government policy – moralistic, judgemental and ineffective. Families are already struggling to make ends meet, in a difficult economic climate, after years of cuts and austerity.

The limit will increase child poverty and penalise children for the order of their birth. Worse than that, it’s governed by an arbitrary process, with when children are born and how many siblings they have mattering more than need.

It’s time the government axes this terrible attack on families, before any further damage is done.'


'Usdaw supports the All Kids Count campaign to scrap the 'two-child limit'.

The basic principle of Universal Credit 'to make work pay' has been undermined by a series of cuts. The introduction of the benefits cap, a freeze to working age benefits, the reduction of working allowances, plus the removal of the first child premium and two-child limit for new claimants mean working families are being pushed into poverty. The roll out of Universal Credit should be halted immediately and fundamentally overhauled. Low paid workers are suffering the costs of a system that unfairly discriminates against larger families; this isn't the welfare system we want for our society.'





'Welsh Women’s Aid strongly opposes the two-child tax credit limit. Many women will never disclose rape to anyone, for various reasons, and to force them to do so is unacceptable. These policies compel women to disclose sexual violence under threat of financial penalties. In Wales, we condemn such discriminatory practices, they exist against a backdrop of austerity that has a disproportionate impact on women’s access to security, safety and the resources they need to live free from violence and abuse. They contradict UK and Welsh Government commitments to advance gender equality and eradicate violence against women, domestic abuse and sexual violence.'

Welsh Women's Aid

'The two-child limit policy is not only pushing women and children survivors of domestic abuse into poverty; it is intensifying the significant financial barriers that women face when trying to escape their abusers. This means that many survivors feel they cannot leave because they will have no way to support their children. The policy’s ‘non-consensual conception’ exception requires survivors to disclose and evidence domestic and sexual abuse, but many women will never disclose rape to anyone, for reasons including trauma, self-protection, shame, and fear for others – including their child. Women’s Aid works to ensure all women and children can live a life free from abuse – which is why this campaign to end the two-child limit is so important.'

Nicki Norman, Acting Co-Chief Executive of Women’s Aid

'WBG supports the campaign to end the two-child limit. There can be no justification for a policy that denies children the support they need because of an accident of birth, pushes families into poverty and forces women who have been raped to report in order to get support for their child.'

Women's Budget Group

'The UK economy is not working for working families; eight million people live in poverty in families where at least one person is in work. Low-income working parents often take insecure work to get the ‘flexibility’ they need. But this work is low-paid and the cost of living has risen, so they need to be supported through the social security system. Removing this support, including the child element of universal credit and child tax credit for third and subsequent children - is punishing them for something that’s very often beyond their control. Working Families has seen the detrimental effect of the two-child limit policy – primarily the additional financial pressure - on low-income working families through the work of its Legal Advice Service.'

Working Families

'Even amongst the many cuts to Social Security over the past decade, the two-child limit stands out as one of the most shameful. It is based on ill-informed prejudices fuelled by tabloid stereotypes. As originally designed, it also took no account of changes in people’s circumstances. Worse still, the restriction is now also being applied by many local authorities in their Council Tax Support schemes too. The concession not to make it retroactive was helpful, but thousands of families are still being hit by it and many more will be in future. Z2K is 100 per cent behind this campaign to scrap it.'


If your organisation would like to sign up to support the campaign, please contact Lizzie Flew at Child Poverty Action Group: [email protected]