Church Action on Poverty hits out at Cameron and Brown

On the UN Day for the Eradication of Poverty today, Church Action on Poverty has challenged David Cameron and Gordon Brown over their commitment to making British poverty history, warning that "warm words" towards the poor count for little when tax policies "favour the rich".

Niall Cooper, Church Action on Poverty National Coordinator said: "David Cameron's welcome commitment yesterday to 'make British poverty history' is not matched by his party's commitment to handing back huge sums to the relatively wealthy in inheritance tax cuts."

"In the past ten days both political parties have effectively caved in to the clamour from a powerful lobby to cut inheritance tax - a policy which will hand back millions of pounds to people who are already relatively well off."

Mr Cooper said the contrast between the priority given to rich and poor in the Pre-Budget statement by the Chancellor earlier in the month was "truly shocking".

"At the same time as handing out millions to the relatively affluent, poorer families will by just 48 pence a week more as a result of Alistair Darling's largesse.

"If the Government is truly committed to ending child poverty it should put money into the pockets of the poorest families - not those already well off," he said.

"Leading politicians of all parties must start resisting the lobbying of the rich and powerful and redirect scarce resources to those who need them most."

"The challenge for the churches is now to campaign with the same vigour to end poverty close to home as we have shown for the Make Poverty History campaign."