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Urgent action needed to turn the tide on child poverty

Thursday 16th March 2017

New figures published today show that child poverty now stands at the highest level since 2009/10, with four million children in the UK now living in relative poverty.

The Households Below Average Income (HBAI) statistics for 2015/6 also show that in-work poverty continues to rise, and now stands at 67 per cent.

The numbers of children living in poverty started to reduce in 2010/11, but worryingly the last two updates to government statistics show child poverty increasing again.

Contact a Family is a steering group member of End Child Poverty, which is calling for urgent action to turn the tide on child poverty and for the government to support families who are struggling with stagnating income and rising prices.

Amanda Batten, chief executive of Contact a Family, said: "Families with disabled children are particularly vulnerable to living in poverty. They are more likely to be on lower incomes due to the difficulty combining working and caring, and to be claiming a range of benefits across the system. It also costs more to raise a disabled child. Our own research showed that more than a quarter of families with disabled children have additional expenses of over £300 every month.

"Families with disabled children have been hit by a lethal combination of cut backs and stagnating wages. In addition, the roll out of Universal Credit will reduce extra disability benefits by more than 50 per cent for most disabled children. We estimate that more than 100,000 families will lose out as a result of Universal Credit alone - leaving even more families at risk of further poverty."

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