Policy priorities to support one-parent families

Single Parents’ Programme for Change: Policy Priorities to Support One Parent Families

Westminster and Holyrood are facing a child poverty crisis and one parent families have been hardest hit by austerity policies. We face a stark choice: ignore rising poverty and shut out a generation of children from the chance to flourish; or tackle child poverty and the actions needed to end it.

OPFS has consulted single parents about their key concerns and the kind of changes that could make a difference to their families.

We propose five cross-cutting themes and ten policy priorities.

Policy Priorities to Support One-Parent Families (PDF, 85kB) >


Five Cross-Cutting Themes

  1. Devolve working-age benefits and Jobcentre Plus to Scotland
  2. Make ending child poverty a government priority
  3. Halt austerity measures
  4. Recognise caring responsibilities
  5. Listen to single parents in strategies to overcome poverty.


Ten Policy Priorities for Government

  1. Attitudes & Stigma: Challenge the stereotypes and myths portrayed about single parents in the media by communicating the facts.
  2. Childcare: Develop high-quality, flexible childcare, affordable at the point of delivery, to allow parents to work or study and to give all children gains in development.
  3. Social Security: Protect families from rising living costs by restoring the value of children’s benefits, protecting them with a triple lock, so that families are not left in poverty.
  4. Welfare Reform: Replace the ‘work first’ approach with services to promote longer term skills and personal development. End the benefit sanctions regime and review Universal Credit.
  5. Employment: Ensure single parents receive a Living Wage and encourage more flexible, family friendly working hours and conditions to support sustainable employment.
  6. Training & Education: End the Work Programme and introduce Scottish tailored programmes to support single parents’ choices around training, education and paid work.
  7. Value Parenting: Provide support when required, for parents within all family types through the provision of non-stigmatising parenting support.
  8. Support for Children: More support for children in changing families, at school and within the Children and Adolescent Mental Health Service (CAMHS).
  9. Schools & Poverty-Proofing: Universal, high quality, free school meals for all primary school children and support for schools to poverty-proof the school day.
  10. Housing: End discrimination against single parents with unmet housing needs and have those needs addressed through a combination of social and affordable housing.


Facebook Twitter Youtube


Become a member of OPFS


How to Donate

OPFS appreciate all the support we receive

Donate to OPFS

Contact OPFS

OPFS Headquarters
2 York Place

0131 556 3899


Accessibility | Sitemap | Professionals

© One Parent Families Scotland 2019.
All Rights reserved.

Registered as: One Parent Families Scotland, a charitable company limited by guarantee. Registered at Edinburgh under number 094860. Scottish Charity Number SC006403