Our journal aims to stimulate debate about the nature, causes and consequences of child poverty in the UK, and potential solutions. To contact the Editor, Josephine Tucker, please email: firstname.lastname@example.org
In June 2012 when the government published the Households Below Average Income dataset for 2010/11, it announced at the same time that it would revisit the question of how we measure child poverty in the UK.
The latest international comparisons of child poverty rates from UNICEF show a smaller proportion of children living in relative income poverty in Hungary, Slovakia and Estonia than in the UK, Italy, Spain or the United States.
At the 101st session of its conference in June this year, the International Labour Organization agreed Recommendation 202 on national social protection floors. Esoteric though it sounds, this sets standard that has the potential to require the radical upgrading of the British social security system.
How much does it cost to bring up a child, free of material hardship and social disadvantage, in the UK today? How should these costs be measured and what costs should be included? And how adequate is the benefits system in meeting the cost of children?
According to the economic orthodoxy of the last thirty years, a stiff dose of inequality is a necessary condition for economic progress. Higher rewards and lower taxes at the top, it is claimed, boost enterprise and deliver a larger economic pie.
This year the European Union will publish its Recommendation on Child Poverty. This is expected to be based on three ‘pillars’ – access to adequate resources, access to services and opportunities, and children’s participation – and to argue for a strong rights-based approach to eradicating child poverty.
Rather than the popular image of feckless people languishing in long-term unemployment, recent research for the Joseph Rowntree Foundation has found that the predominant experience of being out of work is one of moving in and out of low-paid, short-term jobs, and on and off benefits.
The Child Poverty Act 2010 places an obligation on governments to end child poverty in the UK by 2020. It also places new duties on devolved administrations and local government to tackle child poverty.