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to think that when there is a schools place crisis perhaps the government should think of ways to reduce birth rates?

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jellysandwich Wed 04-Sep-13 10:27:30

In my area (London) there is already a huge shortfall in places because there has been a baby boom. They are constantly opening new schools or creating bulge classes but this is often at the expense of other children who lose their playing fields and there is just not enough room in London to keep opening new schools and there is already a housing crisis because the country is so overcrowded.

I think perhaps it is time the government thought about limiting child related benefits to 2 children (which is the replacement rate) and those that want to have more can do so but not with taxpayers money. It would go some way to stopping some of the problems that rising birthrates create such as the school places crisis, overcrowding, pollution, increasing struggles for resources such as food and water and in an already overpopulated world I think the government is being negligent in not putting some sort of limit on child related benefits, especially when it seems to be counter-intuitive (if you work you don't get more money each time you have another child).

Souredstones Wed 04-Sep-13 11:21:41

I'm in an area where estates are being slapped up at a rate of knots but no amenities to go with them, no schools or shops or adequate roads or public transport...

Why isn't the onus on developers to provide infrastructure? It's all very well meeting housing targets but most areas now can't cope with the influx if people (London overspill for instance). It's getting ridiculous now.

WhenSheWasBadSheWasHopeful Wed 04-Sep-13 11:25:08

I was going to suggest compulsory sterilization but fakebook beat me to it.

OnTheBottomWithAWomensWeekly Wed 04-Sep-13 11:25:27

Maybe you should just leave London. It's not the capital of the fucking world, despite what most people who live there think.

Souredstones Wed 04-Sep-13 11:27:57

The other issue, at the other end of the scale, is in coastal regions there is a massive influx of elderly people retiring there from out of county and contributing nothing to the county but taking a lot. The elderly are a huge cost to a counties resources.

Resources that could be spent on building schools.

Partly why elderly people should sell up to pay for their care.

IThinkOfHappyWhenIThinkOfYou Wed 04-Sep-13 11:29:36

The UK fertility rate is 1.96, so under replacement level anyway. YABU, and also short sighted.

The thing that bugs me about the 'first two children' thing is it really means women can have two children. Men can have as many as they please, just so long as they don't go down on the birth cert, and anyway, people don't opt against having a 3rd child for the sake of £13.40 a week.

Callani Wed 04-Sep-13 11:31:37

OP, I think you've raised a real issue but your proposed solution is slightly faulty at best.

The main issue with overcrowded schools in London and the South East has much less to do with the birth rate (which is still holding pretty steady) than it is to do with forced migration.

The key issue is that there are WAY more and a far better variety of jobs in London than elsewhere and so, if you work in some industries, you have no choice but to move to the South East. People who move to London for their career then have kids there and boom, overcrowded schools.

I was very fortunate (for my personal preferences) in that I've managed to escape London and get a good job where I'd prefer to live, but many people don't have that choice. Of my school and uni friends about 80% are now in and around London and a lot of them went there out of necessity.

This causes a talent drain from all other areas, leaves home towns with a disproportionately high percentage of tax dependent people rather than tax payers as well as turning London into an overcrowded monstrosity with ever rising rents.

It'd be best to tackle that issue before you start on anything as drastic as forced birth control.

Callani Wed 04-Sep-13 11:38:58

IThinkOf I've never thought of it like that before - I guess in China where they do control the birth rate they're far more traditional and it's easy enough to limit both of the parents...

Succubi Wed 04-Sep-13 11:42:00

As I understand it, the basis of the Welfare State in this country is about social responsibility. Beveridge recommended to the government of his day that they should find ways of tackling the five giants, being Want, Disease, Ignorance, Squalor and Idleness. He argued to cure these problems, the government should provide adequate income to people, adequate health care, adequate education, adequate housing and adequate employment. It was proposed that all people of working age should pay a weekly National Insurance contribution. In return, benefits would be paid to people who were sick, unemployed, retired or widowed.

The ideal set out by Beveridge is in many ways simply that an ideal but it is a gem that needs to be preserved.

The reality here is that the welfare pot is limiting and we all have a social responsibility. The welfare state was set up to help people in poverty and hardship. Quite frankly it makes me livid when people get upset when anyone suggests that Child Benefit should be limited to two children.

The welfare state is already under huge strain and matters will only continue to get worse. As far as I can see it is not unreasonable to suggest that help be limited in these circumstances.

I know I have slightly gone off on a tangent but the comments that its not fair that only rich people can have more than two children makes my blood boil. Welcome to the real world. Life is inherently unfair.

YoungGirlGrowingOld Wed 04-Sep-13 11:46:17

Soured I don't disagree with paying for their care, but many elderly people feel they have contributed their whole lives already and believed it would be provided by the NHS. I would be in favour of much greater transparency of what the state will and will not provide, including child benefit, so that people can budget and plan acordingly - purchasing top-up insurance where necessary. Anyway, totally off-topic. :-)

Souredstones Wed 04-Sep-13 11:48:34

But we can't afford it. There is a finite amount in the social care pot and, sorry, but the priority should be children's education.

It riles me knowing a person can live and pay taxes in one county then move and take a large amount in social care from another that they haven't contributed to.

Don't know why. It just does.

Souredstones Wed 04-Sep-13 11:49:07

I agree with a top up insurance and also feel you should have to pay a levy to a new county

VodkaJelly Wed 04-Sep-13 11:49:40

I have just had my 4th DC, I did that soley to get the extra £40 a month in child benefit. The cost of formula, clothes, nappies, nursery fees etc is easily covered by the £40 a month the government gives me. Infact, if they had announced that they were limiting child benefit to 2 children I would have had serious second thoughts about having my 4th child. Really, i would have, really.

jessieagain Wed 04-Sep-13 11:52:44

Maybe a solution to the overcrowded schools issue is too raise the school starting age to 6 or 7 like most of Europe.

turkeyboots Wed 04-Sep-13 11:53:28

Like others above I live in an area which has massive New build estates. And massive post war, 70s, 80s etc etc estates. Families live in the new areas, their parents in the 80s developments and their grannies in the post war ones.

None of the estates had enough schools when they were first built. And once built have a 15 to 20 year lifespan before being closed as there are few children nearby. Planners and developers need to be forced to build schools, and pre schools and community facilities.

filee777 Wed 04-Sep-13 11:59:31

Lol at the ridiculous drama queens ranting about abortion.

In this country, on a low income, you get 80 odd quid a week for each child you have. That is NOT the actions of a government or society who understands the importance of food and air. I don't want a country chocka block full of people who can't get jobs or housing so just keep making more people. It's ludicrous,

Of course it's fair to cut all child related benefits to two children. Learn to feed your brood on 160 a week plus income support/jsa or wage or stop having them.

Fairy1303 Wed 04-Sep-13 12:01:23

Brilliant idea OP.

Whilst we're at it why don't we enforce that all third children in the existing families are shipped abroad.

If we then enforce sterilisation after the birth of the second child and pay those who stick to the rules, we'd be well in.
There are probably lots if ideas from china we could adopt.

I have a step daughter who I look after full time and a small baby, am I allowed another one or do I have to stick to one baby because her mother can't be bothered to look after her?


blueberryupsidedown Wed 04-Sep-13 12:02:03

As a temporary emergency solution to part of the problem, all schools in all classes all over the country should take on 31 children instead of 30 and be given budget for more qualitied support staff and TAs. That would solve part of the problem in a temporary way, until more schools are built.

Jan49 Wed 04-Sep-13 12:10:22

I do feel very strongly that people should aim to stop at 2 children, that is, I don't think people should be making the decision to have 3 + children, though obviously there are families with 3+ children who were unplanned or multiple births. We live in a massively overpopulated world and we can't just keep adding to the population and straining the resources as happens now. BTW I've got one child (adult). I don't think whether a person can afford more children or not is relevant. Their children will still be using resources and adding to the number of people on the planet whether their parents get child benefit or other benefits or not.

But I'm not sure it's particularly relevant to the issue of overcrowded London schools. If that's where the jobs are, people will move there and send their children to school there. Perhaps the answer would be for the government to encourage more companies to move away from London to places where housing and rent is cheaper and employees will have a better journey to work, cheaper living conditions, etc.

Pendeen Wed 04-Sep-13 12:13:48

"Maybe not allowing house builders to build massive developments without contributing to improving facilities locally may also be an issue"

This already happens; developers have contributed millions of pounds towards public facilities and infrastructure improvements via so-called Section 106 Agreements however the government is scaling back this system and at the same time easing planning restrictions to encourage growth in house building.

As an Architect, I am torn between my (quite natural) desire to keep my fellow Architects and me in work - although precious few housebuilders actually employ or use qualified Architects - sad and a deep sense of unease about what is likely to be poorly thought out and badly-regulated developments exacerbated by less Section 106 contributions from the housebuilders and their financial backers.

BeCool Wed 04-Sep-13 12:16:42

I am in London and I am struggling to think of more than one family at DD's school who have more than 2 children.

So even if the govt were to implement your "idea" I doubt it would make a dent in the school population.

We've had a huge very posh housing/apartment development built around the corner. When the massive site was first walled off they were advertising that they were also building a new primary school on site. Then that billboard/wall was removed. Now the development is nearly complete and flats are selling for millions - and no school!

ouryve Wed 04-Sep-13 12:17:07

Why don't they just go the whole hog, jellysandwich and sterilise poor people? hmm

Mamatomanymunchkins Wed 04-Sep-13 12:27:01

OMG ~ I've got 5 ~ what shall I do with the surplus 3?!?!

cuckinfunt Wed 04-Sep-13 12:27:02

Is it poor people or is it immigrants who have a culture of large families?

Jan49 Wed 04-Sep-13 12:52:58

OMG ~ I've got 5 ~ what shall I do with the surplus 3?!?!

Obviously no one is suggesting you have to get rid of the ones you have. hmm

IneedAsockamnesty Wed 04-Sep-13 12:57:33

How very silly

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