A coalition of relationship support charities has called on the future UK Government to do more to improve the health of relationships in the UK.

According to the group’s manifesto, more action to support healthy couple, co-parenting and family relationships will improve the nation’s health and wellbeing and make significant savings to the public purse.

The manifesto was produced by The Relationships Alliance, a group of relationship support charities consisting of Relate, OnePlusOne, Tavistock Relationships and Marriage Care.

It calls on all political parties to support strong and healthy relationships by making seven policy priorities a reality if elected. These priorities include introducing a cross-government relationships strategy with a cabinet Minister for Families and Relationships, funding free or subsidised relationship support for disadvantaged groups and expanding the successful IAPT Couple Therapy for Depression programme.

The Relationships Alliance members say that a robust agenda to support relationships would help to resolve parental conflict, reduce health demand, improve children’s educational attainment and ensure people can better protect themselves from shocks such as losing a job, debt, family breakdown or long-term health conditions. Furthermore, these benefits would save the state millions of pounds.

“Poor quality relationships are often at the root of so many of society’s problems including mental health issues, homelessness, debt and loneliness,” explained Chris Sherwood, Chief Executive at Relate. “By ensuring that relationship support is available to everyone who needs it, no matter what their income, we’re confident that any future government would see vast improvements in the nation’s health and wellbeing and reduced pressure on public services.”

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