Feb 03

Tackling the rise in child poverty

Luciana Child PovertyUnder the Tories, one in three children in Liverpool Wavertree – 6,119 – are living in poverty.EndChildPoverty2

Across the country, there has been a 200,000 rise in the number of children living in poverty, up to 3.9 million, in a single year.

That is the price children are paying for the Tory government’s failure to tackle inequality.

In 2015, the Tories scrapped children poverty targets, brought in by the last Labour government. That means the Tories no longer have a legal duty to do anything to measure or reduce the number of children in poverty.

Today, my colleague Labour MP Dan Jarvis put forward a private member’s Bill in Parliament to re-establish a target for the reduction of child poverty in the United Kingdom.

The Bill would require the government to set a child poverty target and a strategy for meeting it.

No child in Britain should have to grow up in poverty. For those children who do, poverty represents a real barrier to them reaching their full potential. Children in poverty are more likely to fall behind in school, less likely to secure a job, and more likely to experience mental and physical illnesses.

By pressing the government to establish a target to cut child poverty, Labour is making a clear statement that rising child poverty can and must be tackled.