BARNSLEY Council bosses will be asked to call on Prime Minister Rishi Sunak to scrap ‘cruel’ two-child limit to benefits - which has plunged thousands of local families into poverty - after the Liberal Democrats submitted a motion to the local authority.

The government’s two-child limit on benefits means that families who have had a third or subsequent child after April 2017 are denied up to £3,235 per year per child compared with families whose kids were all born before that date.

Around 1.5 million children across the UK are impacted by the policy - one in ten children.

It’s estimated that 6,240 children across 1,780 households in Barnsley are affected by the ‘cruel’ limit.

That equates to 12 per cent of all children in Barnsley.

The figures prompted Barnsley’s Liberal Democrat group to ask the council to back their motion to scrap the benefit.

They say there’s a strong correlation between families affected by the two-child limit and those who are living in poverty.

It’s believed that 15,342 children - the equivalent of 29.7 per cent - are living in poverty across the borough.

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Coun Hannah Kitching, leader of the Lib Dems in Barnsley, told the Chronicle: “One in eight children in Barnsley are impacted by the Conservative government's two-child benefit cap policy.

“It is a cruel and harmful policy that should be scrapped.

“The Liberal Democrats in Barnsley are disappointed with the national Labour Party's refusal to commit to scrapping the policy and hope that Barnsley Labour agree with our stance on this issue.

“We hope that all councillors in Barnsley will join us in calling on locals MPs to commit to overturning this disastrous policy and help lift some of the most vulnerable people out of poverty.”

The council will be asked to back the Liberal Democrat motion, and would then write to the Prime Minister, the Chancellor of the Exchequer Jeremy Hunt and the leader of the opposition Sir Keir Starmer in a bid to scrap the limit.

A report states: “This council strongly believes that the two-child limit to benefit payments is a cruel and harmful policy that should be scrapped.

“As per recent Research from the University of York, its introduction has had no positive impacts on employment and earnings.

“Instead it has dragged thousands of local families into poverty.

“Therefore, this council resolves to ask the chief executive to write to all MPs covering the Barnsley area, asking them to commit their public support to the campaign to end the cruel two child limit to benefit payments.

“We will also write to write to the Chancellor of the Exchequer, the Prime Minister and the leader of the opposition indicating Barnsley Council’s strong belief that the two-child limit to benefit payments should be scrapped - which would help 6,240 children living in Barnsley.”