Telegraph (UK) 13 March 2012
Iain Duncan Smith will make the Coalition’s most explicit official statement in favour of parents marrying and staying together. He will say that children from such homes are most likely to end up with a good education and a job…Marriage is particularly good for children, the paper says. The Government is “concerned” by the long-term trend away from marriage, it says. Mr Duncan Smith will say the strategy marks a change in the approach to marriage. Successive governments have done too little to promote stable families, he will say….
The command paper quotes evidence showing that “children tend to enjoy better life outcomes when the same two parents give them support and protection”. Children who have experienced the breakdown of their parents’ relationship are “more likely to have poor cognitive development and education and employment outcomes than those who have lived with both birth parents”. “Outcomes” are better for children when parents stay together, the paper says. Research shows that about one in three cohabiting couples splits up before a child’s fifth birthday, compared with one in 10 married couples. “This Government believes marriage often provides an excellent environment in which to bring up children,” it says. “The Government is clear that marriage should be supported.” Mr Duncan Smith said he was not “lecturing” parents on how to live, merely setting out the facts on the advantages of marriage and commitment.