More action needed on child poverty in Europe

European governments need to step up efforts to tackle child poverty and social exclusion if the targets set for 2020 are to be achieved, according to a new analysis carried out for the Eurochild campaign consortium.

The report looks at the extent to which child poverty and social exclusion featured in EU member states' 2013 National Reform Programmes (NRPs) – annual reports to the European Commission designed to monitor progress on key social goals.

Key points

  • Overall the NRPs show 'some modest improvements' from a child poverty and well-being perspective compared with the previous year's reports.
  • Nonetheless, in most NRPs the attention given to tackling child poverty and social exclusion 'still falls far short' of what is necessary to achieve the Europe 2020 goal of reducing poverty and social exclusion by 20 million by 2020 – as well as responding to the 'severe and growing' impact of the economic crisis and austerity measures on children and their families.
  • 'Much remains to be done' to embed the European Commission's February 2013 social investment package – in particular, the Recommendation on investing in children – at the heart of the Europe 2020 process.
  • Member states should be encouraged to set a specific national target for reducing child poverty and social exclusion – or at least to indicate what proportion of their overall Europe 2020 poverty and social exclusion target relates to children.
  • Member states should in future be asked to assess the impact of all policy measures on children, and in particular on those children at greatest risk of severe poverty and social exclusion.

Source: Hugh Frazer, The 2013 National Reform Programmes (NRP) from a Child Poverty and Well-Being Perspective, Eurochild
LinksReport | Eurochild press release

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Publication date: 
Sep 9 2013