Backing Marriage and Families

What single policy change will make the most difference to improving the health and stability of modern society? The Christian Peoples Alliance is committed to support and strengthen both marriage and family life and put it at the heart of all social policy. We do so based on overwhelming sociological evidence that marriage matters. The traditional family structure, centred upon a loving and faithful relationship between a husband and a wife, is the building block of our society. But it faces attack from every political quarter. Left, right and centre all equivocate in their support for marriage.

Families today are both more diverse and more fragile than a generation ago, leading to far-reaching consequences, especially for children and the elderly. Alone among all political parties, the CPA will address this by assessing all legislation and policy for its impact on families, for instance whether it strengthens their relationships or undermines their capacity to survive and grow.

Marriage has important social benefits that are not provided by alternative domestic arrangements such as co-habiting couples, same-sex partnerships or lone parents. Children brought up and nurtured within the stability and commitment of marriage are significantly more likely to be socially adjusted and educationally successful than those of any other arrangements.

The CPA will support all parents whatever their status in the challenges they face in child rearing. However, there is a direct correlation between the decline of marriage in Britain and the rise of adolescent anti-social behaviour, the yob culture and teenage pregnancies. The Christian Peoples Alliance party will therefore ensure that marriage - together with social inequality - is centre-stage in any debate about social problems amongst young people.

The CPA has produced a costed financial programme backing marriage. It will not be available to co-habiting couples and is deliberately intended as government recognition of the social responsibilities assumed by two people when they choose to marry. In drawing-up these proposals, we will ensure that widows or widowers or orphaned children are not disadvantaged, neither will the CPA ever stigmatise single parents or children growing up in alternative family arrangements.

Labour and the Conservatives claim to back families - but their policies both fail to deliver and fail to make the tough choices needed to reverse the consequences of family breakdown.

Our objectives are to give women real choice - by making mothering at home pay. We will tackle child poverty and the financial causes of family breakdown by significant new Child Tax Allowances. We will reduce the surging demand for housing that is in part due to relationship breakdown by supporting marriage. And the CPA will reverse the value-neutral attitude of the state towards marriage by re-introducing the Married Couples Allowance, which will be transferable.

Christian Peoples Alliance
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Promoted by Peter Vickers, CPA Federal Office, 4 Ewhurst Road, Crofton Park, London, SE4 1AQ