Wales has worst child poverty in UK

Around 200,000 children are living in poverty in Wales, or one in three of the total, according to a new report from the Save the Children charity. In addition, as many as 90,000 live in severe poverty. On both counts, Wales has the highest rate of child poverty of any nation in the UK.

Key points

  • Approximately 600,000 children live in Wales: of those, one in three, or 200,000, are in poverty (in households at or below 60 per cent of median income). 90,000 (14 per cent) are living in severe poverty (in households at or below 50 per cent of median income).
  • More than half (53 per cent) of Welsh children in low-income families are worried their parents are finding it harder to pay for everyday necessities such as food, heating and clothes.
  • A quarter of parents (25 per cent) living on low incomes in Wales report frequently skipping meals, and feel they have nothing else left to cut back on.
  • A fifth of Welsh parents on low incomes say stress about money affects their relationship with their children.
  • Rising living costs, high unemployment, cuts in public spending and benefit changes are all set to make the position in the years immediately ahead.

The report goes on to provide an overview of child poverty in each of the 22 local authority areas in Wales. It is designed to support local authorities in Wales to discharge their statutory duty to tackle child poverty under the Children and Families (Wales) Measure 2010.

Source: Ross Chamberlain and Ruth Mullineux (with Helen Cocco and Sara Drysdale), Child Poverty Snapshots: The Local Picture in Wales, Save the Children

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