Give cohabiting couples the same support as married couples if one of them dies!
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Unfortunately my sister Stacey tragically lost her fiancé Matt in a car crash on Monday 1st October.
Not only had they lived together for the last 5 years, they have two children together aged 2 and 4.
If my sister was married she would have been entitled to a lump government sum and also a monthly allowance for 18 months. In the middle of our grief we’ve found out that although they lived together and have children together, because they were not married, my sister is entitled to very little help in terms of Government funding. Equating to just £20 a week. This seems totally unjust.
This Government entitlement people get when they are married helps families pay for the expense that come with losing someone (funeral expenses etc…), to compensate for the emotional loss to the family, and to help with the adjustment of going from being a two-income family to one.
Just because my sister and her partner weren’t married, doesn’t make the unfortunate situation she is in any different. She still has the same bills to pay and has lost a monthly income. In a time when she should be focusing on grieving she has been faced with additional financial pressure.
She is currently having to rely on the generosity of strangers to raise funds to ensure she is able to keep a roof over the children’s head in the coming months.
My sister isn’t the only person who has been faced with this absurd and heartbreaking situation. Recently another mum in this petition, Siobhan McLaughlin, was featured in the press after the Government denied their entitlement - she had to fight tooth and nail taking her case to the supreme court to get the widows benefit she was owed.
6 million families live together in the U.K. outside of marriage. If one of them dies that loss is just as real as if they were married. The U.K. Government needs to move into the 21st century a recognise that the family unit looks different today.
I believe if enough of us speak out we can convince the Government to create a fair system that supports us all.
Please sign this petition today and join me in calling on the Government cohabiting couples equal access to benefits.
All couples the same rights - whether they are married or not.
Today: Samantha is counting on you
Samantha Oakley needs your help with “The government: The Same rights and benefits for unmarried couples when one dies as married couples”. Join Samantha and 89,199 supporters today.