On Air

Robert Kenny 10:00AM - 3:00PM

Now Playing

Take That A Million Love Songs
You are viewing content from The Breeze South Devon.
Would you like to make this your preferred location?

A quarter of children in the South West living in poverty

Research by the End Child Poverty coalition has found that fastest rises in poverty are in the poorest areas.

The UK’s leading child poverty coalition is calling for the major Parties to outline ambitious child poverty-reduction strategies as new data published today shows that child poverty is becoming the norm in some parts of the South West, with more than 25% of children living trapped in poverty in some constituencies.

The data, published by the End Child Poverty coalition, highlights how levels of child poverty vary across Britain and shows that poverty is on the rise - and rising fastest in places where it is already highest.

Researchers from Loughborough University estimated the numbers of children locked in poverty in each constituency, ward and local authority area across Britain, showing that child poverty is rising particularly rapidly in parts of major cities, especially London, Birmingham and Manchester, suggesting that inequality between areas is growing.

The local authority areas in South West facing the highest levels of child poverty, after housing costs are taken into account, are:

  • Plymouth and Torbay with 31%
  • Weymouth and Portland and Torridge with 30%
  • Cornwall with 29%
  • Gloucester and North Devon with 28%

Sam Royston, Director of Policy at The Children’s Society, said: “The Children’s Society is hugely disappointed to see that across the South West around 1 in 4 children are trapped in poverty.

"Without significant additional investment, there is little hope of reducing child poverty rates in coming years.  

"The government must urgently invest more in children’s services and reverse damaging decisions to cut benefit rates to ensure we can disrupt this continuing cycle of disadvantage.

“We need a renewed strategy to end child poverty in order to prevent another generation of young people growing up in a country where poverty harms their wellbeing and undermines their life chances.”

Anna Feuchtwang, Chair of the End Child Poverty coalition, said: "We know what causes child poverty and we know how to end it. We know that the income of less well-off families has been hit by severe real-terms cuts in benefits and by higher housing costs.

"And we know that work alone does not guarantee a route out of poverty, with two thirds of child poverty occurring in working families.

"Yet in many areas growing up in poverty is not the exception it’s the rule with more children expected to get swept up in poverty in the coming years, with serious consequences for their life chances.

"Policymakers can no longer deny the depth of the problem or abandon entire areas to rising poverty.

"The Government must respond with a credible child poverty-reduction strategy.

"The Government’s own data shows that child poverty in the UK has been rising steadily in recent years. This just isn’t right.

"Growing up in poverty means growing up trapped.

"It restricts a child’s chances of doing well at school, of living a healthy and happy life, and of finding well paid work as adults.

"We urgently need Government to set a course of action that will free our children from the grip of poverty."

End Child Poverty is calling for the Government to set out an ambitious and credible child poverty-reduction strategy, including:

  • Restoring the link between benefits (including housing support) and inflation, and then making up for the loss in the real value in children’s benefits as a result of the 4-year freeze and previous sub-inflation increases in benefit rates.
  • Ending the two-child limit on child allowances in tax credits and universal credit-and reforming Universal Credit;
  • Reversing the cuts and investing in children’s services such as mental health, education, childcare and social care.

 

% of children living in poverty 2017/18

Local Authority

Before Housing

After Housing

Bath and North East Somerset

12%

19%

Bournemouth

17%

27%

Bristol, City of

21%

27%

Cheltenham

14%

22%

Christchurch

11%

20%

Cornwall

16%

29%

Cotswold

12%

22%

East Devon

12%

23%

East Dorset

11%

19%

Exeter

15%

25%

Forest of Dean

14%

26%

Gloucester

19%

28%

Mendip

13%

23%

Mid Devon

14%

26%

North Devon

15%

28%

North Dorset

12%

23%

North Somerset

14%

22%

Plymouth

20%

31%

Poole

13%

23%

Purbeck

12%

24%

Sedgemoor

15%

24%

South Gloucestershire

12%

20%

South Hams

13%

23%

South Somerset

13%

25%

Stroud

12%

21%

Swindon

16%

25%

Taunton Deane

13%

23%

Teignbridge

13%

24%

Tewkesbury

12%

21%

Torbay

21%

31%

Torridge

17%

30%

West Devon

13%

27%

West Dorset

12%

24%

West Somerset

16%

31%

Weymouth and Portland

18%

30%

Wiltshire

13%

24%

Click here view the national report: http://www.endchildpoverty.org.uk/poverty-in-your-area-2019/ 

More from Local News