The Catholic Union and church groups in London have warned of a rough sleeping crisis, unless the Government acts soon.
Around 15,000 people across the country have been housed by local authorities since the start of the coronavirus pandemic. This has been made possible by extra funding from the Government to provide accommodation for rough sleepers in empty hotels and hostels as part of the “everyone in” scheme. This includes 1,400 people in London.
The Catholic Union has called on the Government to scrap the two-child limit for childcare support for those on low incomes and the unemployed.
The policy, introduced in 2017, limits the childcare element of Universal Credit and Tax Credits to two children per household. The policy was widely criticised by faith groups at the time, on the grounds that it discriminates against larger families.
The Catholic Union has written to the Chancellor to call for the policy to be scrapped in light of the coronavirus outbreak and the huge financial pressures faced by families across the country.
The Catholic Union has called on the Government to give greater support to people who live and work in care homes.
The number of deaths from coronavirus among care home residents has reduced, but it is still a high proportion of the total number of deaths.
In a letter to Care Minister, Helen Whately MP, the Catholic Union urged the Government to uphold the dignity of older people during the coronavirus and recognise the profound importance of care work to society.
The Catholic Union has called on the UK Government to allow churches to reopen for private prayer ahead of the next review of lockdown restrictions.
The existing restrictions – which require the closure of all places of worship – are due to be reviewed on Thursday 28 May.
Catholic Union President, Sir Edward Leigh, has written to Communities Secretary, Robert Jenrick, to call for churches in England to be allowed to open for private prayer as soon as possible.
Head of Public Affairs
We need clear arguments for how and why churches should open again writes James Somerville-Meikle
When will it end?
People have been asking this question for weeks now. When will schools re-open, when will people return to work, when will public transport resume anything like a normal timetable?
Just as important to many of the 4.5 million Catholics in this country is the question about when churches will open again.
The Catholic Union has called for greater support for volunteers during the coronavirus.
In a letter to the Communities Secretary, Robert Jenrick MP, the Catholic Union warned that the country’s army of volunteers is being overlooked in the Government’s response to the virus.
The Catholic Union has called on the three remaining Labour leadership contenders to support the common good, ahead of the new leader being announced next month.
Catholic Union Director, Nigel Parker, has written to Rebecca Long Bailey, Lisa Nandy, and Sir Keir Starmer, to ask them to back five key commitments on social policy. These include a pledge to scrap the two-child tax limit on benefits, support for new Catholic schools, and continuing to respect abortion and assisted dying as matters of conscience.
Catholic Union Head of Public Affairs, James Somerville-Meikle, comments on the Budget.
“The focus of this Budget is rightly on preparing the country for Coronavirus – and it’s good to see extra funds being made available to support our NHS and public services.
The Catholic Union has joined forces with the Catholic Bishops to urge Chancellor Rishi Sunak to abolish the two-child limit on benefits as part of next month’s Budget.
In a letter congratulating Mr Sunak on his recent appointment, Nigel Parker (Director of the Catholic Union) and Bishop Richard Moth (Chair of the Bishops’ Conference Department for Social Justice), called on the Chancellor to help more than half a million children by abolishing the two-child limit for Universal Credit and Child Tax Credit in his forthcoming budget, scheduled for next month.
The Catholic Union has called on the Government to focus on supporting marriage and family life rather than looking at plans to make divorce easier.
The Government is planning a shake up of divorce laws in England and Wales, which will remove the ability to contest a divorce and replace the requirement to produce evidence of ‘irretrievable breakdown’ with a simple statement.