Press release from the Marriage Foundation, 28th September 2013
Today’s announcement of £200 tax relief for married couples is the first clear policy in support of marriage in a generation.
Politicians are finally catching up with what the research has been confirming for years and human nature has been saying for millennia.
Marriage matters. Making a promise to stay together for life – even if no guarantee – removes any lingering ambiguity and sets out a clear plan for a future together.
Almost all intact couples – 93% – with teenage children are married. Couples who don’t marry have the odds stacked heavily against them.
The fall in marriage rates has been the primary reason for the doubling of family breakdown involving children since 1980.
So if more couples do marry and the trend reverses – marriage rates are showing the first signs of this already – more couples will stay together and avoidable family breakdown will reduce.
On its own, this policy will not encourage more couples to marry. The amount involved falls far short of the ‘couple penalty’, highlighted in our recent report.
But if this policy shows that government leaders are at last beginning to understand why marriage matters, then maybe it will encourage the rest of us.
Notes to editors:
For media inquiries please contact Beatrice Timpson on 07803 726 977. Harry Benson is available to be interviewed, on 07515 699187.
The Marriage Foundation was founded by Sir Paul Coleridge, a High Court Judge, moved by his personal experience in 40 years as a barrister and judge specialising in family law. The Foundation seeks to improve public understanding of marriage reduce the numbers of people drawn into the family justice system – some 500,000 children and adults each year