End Child Poverty has welcomed this evening’s vote in the House of Lords to retain income as a measure of child poverty. 3.7 million children are living in poverty in the UK, and two thirds of those have at least one parent in work, so it is crucial that the government sees poverty as more than simply an issue of worklessness. End Child Poverty calls on the Government to recognise the impact and importance of in-work poverty and retain the Lords amendment when the Welfare Reform and Work Bill goes back for debate in the Commons.
Sam Royston, Chair of the End Child Poverty Coalition and Policy Director at The Children’s Society, said:
“By seeking to abandon commitments to report on and tackle the number of children living in families on low incomes the Government seemed to think it could make child poverty magically disappear. Scrapping the Child Poverty Act and replacing it with measures based on worklessness and low educational attainment is not enough to help the millions of children who are suffering in real poverty now. Income is at the heart of child poverty and the House of Lords has acknowledged that today.
“In 2010 all the main political parties committed to measure and report on the number of children living in poverty and to eradicate it by 2020. It is not too late for the Government to keep this promise.”