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Showing posts with the label child poverty

What holiday?

Low-income families should be given help to cope with increased emotional and financial pressures over the school holidays, a Child Poverty Action Group report, commissioned by Glasgow Life - an arms-length body of Glasgow City Council, NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde and the Glasgow Centre for Population Health said. Some families felt the strain when free school meals were not available. This could be exacerbated when working hours were cut for childcare reasons and families resorted to borrowing. The research highlighted the problems posed by the extra costs of feeding children over school holiday periods when free school lunches were no longer available. Lack of affordable childcare, leading to reduced working hours was also identified as an issue. The report states that subsidised travel and free activities and lunches could help struggling families.
John Dickie, director of the Child Poverty Action Group in Scotland, said "The pressures low-income families face are magnifie…

Hunger Lesson for Teachers

Child poverty in Scotland is now so severe that teachers are being sent advice on how to spot if a child in their class is going hungry, amid evidence that the problem is having an increasingly serious impact on education. The new guidance, which will be distributed to schools and colleges across Scotland next week, warns that the issue of hunger among pupils is “moving from the exceptional to the more commonplace” as families struggle to make ends meet. 
The advice has been drawn up by the Educational Institute of Scotland (EIS), the country’s largest teaching union, after a survey of 300 schools and colleges suggested that teachers are increasingly having to help underfed pupils.
“Pupils may appear pale, fatigued, irritable or lacking in concentration, or complain of headaches or feeling unwell,” it states. “While there can be other reasons underlying such signs, for a growing number of children and young people in our schools and colleges today, the reason will be hunger.”

More th…

Poverty is Child Abuse

The Child Poverty Action Group calculates that 220,000 children live in poverty in Scotland. That’s one in five children, but we know that in some areas, that figure is one in three. We know that in some areas out of a class of 30 children, ten of them can be living in poverty.
Living in poverty puts health, wellness and the ability to do well at school at risk. It’s not just a case of not having nice clothes and not being able to go on holidays. We are dealing with families who rely on food banks and emergency grants, not to get over a difficult time, but to survive. We are living in a society now where GPs routinely ask people, when they can find no other cause for their pain or illness, if they have enough to eat.
Living in poverty creates long-term difficulties for these children, who grow up at greater risk of mental ill health, chronic illness, unemployment and homelessness; and so the cycle continues.
 The Institute of Fiscals studies acknowledges that poverty increased quickl…

Being poor means poor intelligence

Economic health disparities are a reality. In two separate studies, researchers found that experiencing poverty in early childhood is linked to smaller brain size and less efficient processing of certain sensory information. Exposure to early life adversity should be considered no less toxic than exposure to lead, alcohol or cocaine. Exposure to poverty in early childhood negatively affects brain development, but good-quality caregiving may help offset this effect.

In one study, published in JAMA Pediatrics, children who grew up in impoverished households showed smaller white and grey matter in their brains compared with those who had more means — these make up the density of nerve connections between different parts of the brain. The less wealthy kids also developed smaller hippocampus and amygdala regions, which are involved in regulating attention, memory and emotions.

According to the researchers from Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis, the smaller brain region…

Facts of the Day

An estimated 36,367 children in the Glasgow City Council area are living below the poverty line, according to the research.

Statistics from the Scottish Government last month revealed 710,000 people north of the border - including 150,000 children - were living in relative poverty in 2011-12.

The number of people sleeping rough on the streets of Scotland exceeds 1,700. The highest numbers of rough sleepers are in the Edinburgh and Dundee council areas, Edinburgh had 363 rough sleeper cases and Dundee had 97.


Hungry children in Scotland

Some children may be going hungry over the school holidays because their parents cannot afford to feed them properly, the Church of Scotland has warned. "There is the real possibility that many children from all parts of Scotland will spend the summer break not getting enough to eat," said the Rev Sally Foster-Fulton Convener of the Church and Society Council. "People may jokingly mock school dinners but they provide essential basic nutrition and for many children they are the one substantial cooked meal they will get." It was recently reported that the number of people using food banks has more than doubled in Scotland in the past year. The Trussell Trust said 14,318 people were helped during 2012-13; up 5726 on the previous year.

Poor Scots and rich ones

In 2011/12, there were 710,000 (14%) Scots in poor households of which 420,000 working age adults, 140,000 pensioners and 150,000 children were living in relative poverty, 80,000 children were living with combined material deprivation and low income.

Within the last two years, Scottish incomes have gone down from an average of £461 per week to £436.

Welfare measures including changes to eligibility for child tax credits and working tax credits which could, on average, mean that households will become around £700 per year worse off.

Child poverty levels are expected to soar in Scotland over the next few years by at least 50,000, taking the total number of children who live in families that struggle daily to provide to over 280,000.

Ian Marchant, CEO of  Scottish Power had received £1.45m in 2011.The company's annual report showed he earned a basic salary of £870,000, up by £30,000. He also received shares worth more than £1m from the firm's long-term bonus plan. His pension wa…

Weans in need

One in five children is living in poverty in parts of almost every local council area in Scotland. Nearly all of Scotland’s local authorities – 27 out of 32 – have council wards where more than 20 per cent of their children live in poverty, according to the Campaign to End Child Poverty. Children were classed as being in poverty if their family is forced to live on 60 per cent or less of median UK income.

Children in the Glasgow North East constituency have 43 per cent classed as poor. A third of children live in poverty in Scotland’s biggest city of Glasgow, while Dundee had more than a quarter classed as poor. Edinburgh had almost one in five children in poverty, with a similar figure for Fife, East Ayrshire and North Lanarkshire.

 Recent forecasts indicate that at least 65,000 more children in Scotland will be living below the breadline by the end of the decade – a far cry from promises made in 1999 to end child poverty by 2020.


Percentage of children living in poverty
By local a…

Tiny Tims

After the Celtic Tiger crash more than 18 per cent of children in the Irish Republic were at risk of, and almost 9 per cent were actually in, consistent poverty.

In 2009, the most up to date figures available, there were 233,192 people, or 5.5 per cent, in 'consistent poverty' and 579,819 people, or 14.1 per cent, 'at risk of poverty'. At risk means an income of €230 a week for an adult; consistent means unable to afford new clothes, meat or fish, or being unable to heat your home.

Learning to organise

Shining shoes, mining and herding animals among the many jobs done by an estimated 750,000 children between five and 17 in Bolivia. Rodrigo Medrano Calle is a Bolivian labour leader who meets and lobbies top government officials. That's not surprising in a country where pay is often low, working conditions harsh and unions play a powerful role in society. Rodrigo is just 14 years old, and his union's members are all children, the Bolivian Union of Child and Adolescent Workers (Unatsbo), which represents thousands of under-18s.  In Bolivia, its successes include organising pay rises for children who sell newspapers on the city streets of Potosí from 6 cents (½p) to 12 cents a paper, using negotiations and the threat of strikes. And it's not just a Bolivian phenomenon: there are similar organisations in Guatemala, Paraguay, Peru and Colombia.

Bolivia's informal economy includes everyone from bricklayers to farmers to shoeshiners, who work without contracts and set schedu…

Poverty means failing in school

Children who live in poverty in Scotland are already failing before school starts, a new study from Save the Children report suggested. Youngsters from poorer backgrounds were twice as likely to start primary school with developmental difficulties.
 The study found poorer children were twice as likely to have emotional and physical development difficulties. They were also twice as likely to have problems with communication and expressing themselves or making themselves understood. The report's authors said poorer youngsters were 50% more likely to face difficulties mixing with other children and were 40% more likely to be behind in their cognitive development - the ability to gain knowledge and learn. Figures from later in the education system showed that these children begin their school life behind their classmates and never catch up.



Child poverty according to their teachers

Growing numbers of children are turning up at school malnourished, dirty and struggling to concentrate because of soaring poverty levels in the recession, a study suggests.  Almost six-in-10 teachers reported encountering pupils who are left hungry through lack of food at least once a week, it was revealed. In some cases, "scavenger" children have been caught finishing scraps of food or using school as a place to warm up and eat a decent meal, according to the study by the Prince's Trust and the Times Educational Supplement.

The study – based on interviews with 515 secondary school teachers- found  39 per cent of teachers found hungry pupils every day, rising to 57 per cent who witnessed it on a weekly basis. 16 per cent of teachers had seen a pupil suffering from malnutrition or showing signs of not eating enough every day, with a further 13 per cent encountering this weekly. Nearly 66 per centcame across students who did not have clean clothe…

Women in Poverty

Divorce and desertion are pushing Scottish women into poverty and debt spirals much faster than their male counterparts according to research. Women account for over 90% of lone parents in Scotland and 60% of unpaid carers. There are some lone parent families struggling by on less than half of the UK's median income, which is considered to be about GBP7,000 a year. Working tax credits have been reduced.  Lone parents with a child aged seven or over now cannot get income support either and childcare contributions have been cut by 10%.

Read more: http://www.digitaljournal.com/pr/679741#ixzz1t7cymv35
Women's charity Engender Niki Kandirikirira, Executive Director, said, "We know how many children, pensioners and households are in poverty but it's the statistics themselves that reveal why the numbers are proving so hard to bring down. At no point do we recognise the gendered nature of poverty. Measures to tackle poverty will fail to deliver until we recognise …

poor education

15 year-old children at the bottom of the class are so far behind they are performing “as if they were 10 years old”, a report handed to MSPs has claimed. The paper, written by local government experts, concluded that Scotland has the highest gap between top and bottom in schools of anywhere in western Europe.

It confirms previous studies by international bodies which have also claimed that low achievers from poor families are “slipping through the net” in the classroom.

http://www.scotsman.com/news/education/brightest_pupils_5_years_ahead_of_poorest_1_2064261

scottish child poverty

Children in one in five Scottish families live in poverty, campaigners have warned, with fears that number is set to rise. The highest levels of child poverty are in Glasgow, where in some parts every other child lives in a family struggling to put food on the table or pay heating bills.

John Dickie, spokesman for Scottish members of the Campaign to End Child Poverty said “It is shameful that in almost every part of our country there are children who are missing out and seeing their future life chances seriously harmed. An increasing number of children, particularly in Scotland, are living in families without paid work and we are deeply concerned about the effect that rising unemployment is having on child poverty."

poverty trap for kids

Poverty trap for children as fifth of Scottish families jobless. The number of under-16s living in households without adults in employment rose to 145,000 (15.8 per cent of under- 16s) this year from 141,000 (15.3 per cent) last year. In Scotland, there were 359,000 workless households in June.

Mr Peter Kelly, the director of the Glasgow-based Poverty Alliance, said that if people were going into part-time or low-paid work, their earnings would not be enough to make a huge difference to their lives. "Sometimes you have to question the extent to which giving someone a job can lift them out of the low-income bracket. We want to see people moving into jobs that lift them out of poverty."

the price of kids

The cost of raising a child in Scotland until their 21st birthday has risen to £203,000 – or £26.50 a day – a report has revealed. The study shows the cost of bringing up a child has risen by 50% since the firms’s first Cost of A Child Report in 2003. It has gone up by an inflation-busting 4.5%, from £194,337, in the last year alone.

Childcare and education – excluding private school fees – account for the biggest costs to parents. Childcare is estimated cost £67,430 over the course of a child’s upbringing. Other regular expenses that have risen in cost at a rate higher than inflation include clothing, which is up 11.7% compared to last year, holidays (up 6.4%), food (up 5.9%) and personal care items, such as toiletries, which have risen by 5.1%. Overall childcare costs are £84 for 25 hours a week – more than half the gross average part-time weekly earnings of £160. In addition, Government support to parents to fund childcare is going down – from 80% to 70%.

"Three-qua…

old and young suffer

Save the Children said its research revealed there are 90,000 children in Scotland - or one in 10 - living in what they term the most "severe poverty" and the charity said they feared that number would rise "dramatically" due to Scots having the lowest chance of finding work in the UK.

In January this year, Glasgow had Scotland's highest proportion of youngsters in severe poverty at 18%, followed by North Ayrshire, West Dunbartonshire and Clackmannanshire at 14%, and Dundee at 12%.

The charity said Glasgow had almost 18 people chasing every job vacancy, and that in West Dunbartonshire there are more than 36 people vying for every job.

Douglas Hamilton, Save the Children's head of Scotland, said: "Urgent action is required in Scotland's most deprived areas or we will end up with a lost generation. Some of these children will grow up living in households with no working adults - they have never seen a parent or grandparent work and this becomes the…