Figures uncovered by Denton and Reddish MP, Andrew Gwynne, show a worryingly sharp rise in child poverty rates across the region.
Latest figures available show that on average, 25% of children covering all wards within Denton and Reddish constituency are classified as in poverty. Overall the picture is no better across the region with the child poverty rate in Tameside at 29% and for Stockport, 20% – the North West overall suffers from a 26% child poverty rate overall.
There are more than 3 and a half million children living in poverty in the UK, and the new figures reveal that whilst child poverty exists in every part of the country, as many as 47% of children are living in poverty in concentrated areas – compared to one in ten in others. Unsurprisingly, child poverty is the highest in large cities, particularly in London, Birmingham and Manchester.
The coalition of charities, faith groups and unions is warning that the benefits freeze in place until the end of the decade will mean that as prices rise, low income families will find it increasingly hard to pay for the same basic essentials.
Andrew Gwynne said:
“The latest figures released by the organisation End Child Poverty show that we’re going backwards.
Child poverty reduced dramatically between 1998/9 – 2011/12 when 800,000 children were lifted out of poverty. Since 2010, child poverty figures have flat-lined. The number of children in absolute poverty has increased by 0.5 million since 2010.
The Chancellor’s Autumn Statement is the government’s opportunity to show they are on the side of families and children. I will be urging the Chancellor to reverse the significant cuts to Universal Credit targeted at working families.”
Chair of End Child Poverty Sam Royston said:
“Many families who are just about managing today, won’t be managing tomorrow if Universal Credit leaves them with fewer pounds in their pocket, and if rising costs of living means their money doesn’t stretch as far as it used to.”