London: Over 1.5million Children In The UK ‘Living In Severe Poverty’ Charity

23 Feb

More than 1.5 million children in the UK are living in severe poverty, a charity has warned.

More Than 1.5m UK Kids ‘In Severe Poverty’ Play video

Video: More Than 1.5m UK Kids ‘In Severe Poverty’

Save The Children described the figure as a “national scandal” and claimed the number is likely to grow, as Government cuts to welfare and public services bite.

It is calling on Chancellor George Osborne to counter the recent increase in VAT and rising inflation and unemployment with an emergency plan in next month’s budget.

Save The Children said even more families will struggle to get by unless more jobs are channelled to the worst-off areas and more financial help is given to parents who want to work.

Its research, carried out by New Policy Institute, found 29 local authorities in Britain have more than one in five children living in severe poverty.

For the first time, the charity has named the 10 areas believed to be the worst affected.

Manchester, with more than a quarter of children in severe poverty, has the highest proportion.

Four London boroughs are also listed, along with Leicester, Nottingham, Liverpool, Birmingham and Blackpool.

In total, it found 1.6 million children in severe poverty across the country.

Save The Children defines severe poverty as when a lone parent and child have less than £134 per week to live on and when a couple with two children have to make do with less than £240.

Head of UK policy Sally Copley said: “Children up and down the country are going to sleep at night in homes with no heating, without eating a proper meal and without proper school uniforms to put on in the morning.

“No child should be born without a chance.”

The rise in severe poverty has been noticed by charities like Foodbank in Salisbury.

They set up 10 years ago to supply food parcels to people with no money for food.

In recent years they have expanded rapidly as more people have found themselves in real difficulties.

Foodbank supply their clients with a box of food which will feed them and their family for three days.

Jeremy Ravn from Foodbank told Sky: “There’s definitely been an increase in people needing help since the recession began.

“Some of those may still have jobs, but be on short-time working or have taken a pay cut.

“They are sometimes driven over the edge when a large bill comes in and the simply can’t cope.”

Foodbank has 90 centres distributing food to the needy across Britain, but expects that number to increase to around 400 within a few years.

The charity is keen people do not become dependent on their food parcels and will ask other agencies to step in and offer help, if they deliver more than three boxes to the same family.

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