Mothers names to be allowed on marriage registers

David Cameron today announced plans to allow the names of married couples’ mothers to be added to marriage registers for the first time. Speaking to delegates at the Relationship Alliance in central London, the Prime Minister said: “We’re going to address another inequality in marriage too. The content of marriage registers in England and Wales has not changed since the beginning of Queen Victoria’s reign. At the moment, they require details of the couples’ fathers but not their mothers. This clearly doesn’t reflect modern Britain – and it’s high time the system was updated. So I have asked the Home Office to look at how we can address this too.”

In his speech, Mr Cameron praised Relate, which will receive additional funding for helping to keep families together. He said: “There are thousands of children who have renewed self-esteem and hope for the future because of your support in the toughest of times. And for families where breakups have been unavoidable, time and again your support has helped to make the fallout as painless as possible.”

Government figures show Britain has 500,000 ‘troubled families,’ costing the state more than £30bn (€37.5bn) a year.

The Prime Minister unveiled a series of measures to try to persuade families to stay together. He announced:

• A doubling of the budget for relationship counselling, to £19.5m (€24bn).

• A renewed focus on the 500,000 troubled families – up from 120,000 – by helping families who face unemployment, antisocial behaviour, debt and truancy.

• An initiative to encourage adoption by allowing councils to apply for help from a £19m (€23.75bn) fund. Adopting a child from care will trigger an extra £1,900 (€2.375) in additional pupil premium money to their school.

• A new ‘family test,’ to ensure that every domestic policy is examined for its impact on the family.

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