There was a question on child poverty last Thursday and I came in on the issue of Baby Bonds or the Child Trust Fund to give its proper title. I think the abolition of Baby Bonds was one of the governments worst acts in the area of child poverty. Baby Bonds were awarded to all new born children and any friend or relative could top them up during the teenage years so that the child had a fair pocket of savings by the time they reached adulthood.
The minister claimed that he wanted to deal with child poverty partly by mentoring but frankly I would rather put money directly into a child’s savings then rely on mentoring alone – desirable as mentoring may be. As Baby Bonds also encouraged saving I think it fitted rather well with current economic policy. I suspect that we will eventually re invent them – I certainly hope so.