Labour misses its aim on child poverty

11 Apr 02
The government is failing to achieve its aim of rescuing more than a million children from the poverty trap, new figures out this week reveal.

12 April 2002

The figures for the financial year 2000/01, published on April 11, show that there are 500,000 fewer children in poverty since Labour entered government in 1997, a significant decline.

But Chancellor Gordon Brown promised in last year's Budget: 'Tax and benefit reforms in this Parliament will lift over 1.2 million children out of relative poverty.'

The government defines child poverty as existing where children live in households earning less than 60% of the median national income.

Thus if the better-off become richer, the effect of rises in income and benefits for the poorer sectors may be negated. Average earnings and incomes have risen significantly since 1997.

The figures, published by Work and Pensions Secretary Alistair Darling, show that there are still 3.9 million children living below the poverty line.


Did you enjoy this article?