Why Should We Care About Child Poverty?

1045 Words5 Pages
fWhy should we care about child poverty in the UK? Despite the United Kingdom being one of the richest nations in the world, it also has one of the highest rates of child poverty. Research shows in 2010/11 about 13 million people in the UK were living in poverty after housing costs and 3.6million of them children (Randeep Ramesh, 14/06/12). Of the children, 1.6million of these were living in severe poverty (Barnardos, 2012). These numbers are unacceptable for a first world, developed and wealthy country; but with rising living costs and the government making cut backs, these figures are set to rise further (Sinead O’Shea, 19/01/13). When people think of the term poverty, they tend to think of third world countries; malnourished children growing up in a village with no clean water available for miles, with disease and infection rife. Poverty is actually measured against the typical living standards of a society (P Townsend, 1979) and a number of things contributing; lack of money, material possessions, food, poor education and substandard living conditions. The causes of child poverty vary so much, usually determined by the parent’s situation which is not always their fault. 62% of children growing up in poverty are in households where at least one of person works, so having a job is still not a direct route out of poverty (Child Poverty Map of the UK, March 2011). Low wages/minimum raised in line with the ever-increasing cost of living. Those that are currently unemployed down to the economic crisis and are claiming welfare payments are only going to be pushed further into poverty if the plans to freeze the benefits received and not increasing them in line with inflation (Charlotte Philby, Oliver Wright, 03/12/12). The ‘scrounger’ stigma that the media has created about those that do claim is also a cause, so much so that around 1.8 million people have
Open Document