Almost half of UK parents are lying in bed at night stressed about money – with many planning a frugal Christmas for their families.
The research, commissioned by the Family and Parenting Institute, found that parents are intending to spend less on festive food and Christmas gifts for their loved ones this year, with 30 per cent even cutting down on visiting relatives for financial reasons.
The sad news is that it also revealed over a third of the 2,053 parents interviewed have seen an increase in family arguments or tensions due to financial issues.
The survey results come towards the end of a year that has seen a raft of government decisions affecting UK families – Universal Child Benefit payment has ended, the Child Trust Fund and the Health in Pregnancy Grant have been scrapped, and Tax Credits have been scaled back for many families.
Parents are predicting a tough 2011 for their families, with over half of mothers responding that they worried their household income would fail to cover bills next year.
Dr Katherine Rake, Chief Executive of the Family and Parenting Institute, said: “These survey results expose the severe pressures that many families are currently experiencing. Money is tight, and parents have been left wondering if they have been lined up to take the brunt of the economic cuts.
“To take families through the very difficult times ahead, the government needs to let families know how it plans to support them in the future and how it aims to fulfil its ambition to build a family friendly UK.”
Dr Rake added: “Christmas should be a time where the whole family can get together and support each other. The fact that 30 per cent of parents are planning to spend less on visiting relatives this festive season is therefore particularly concerning, as it could lead to isolation among the elderly.”
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