210,000 children in Scotland are living in relative poverty according to new statistics. Social Justice Secretary, Alex Neil, branded the figures ‘unacceptable’. 20,000 more children were living in combined low income and material deprivation in 2013/14 than in the previous years, however, before housing costs, levels of child poverty fell to 14%, but when housing costs were considered, the figure was 22%.
Rising employment and increased working hours mean that levels of relative poverty have fallen by 60,000 in Scotland, with the figure now standing at 940,000, despite this, the percentage of children living in relative poverty after housing costs stayed the same.
Mr Neil raised concerns over the impact that further welfare cuts will have, saying that
“I dread to think how many more people will be pushed into distress and despair as a direct result of the UK Government’s proposed £12 billion cuts to the welfare budget.”
The Scottish Government was worked in partnership with the Poverty Truth Commission.to produce a 20 page easy read version of the statistical report, which includes quotes for people living in poverty “to give the numbers meaning” and to counter views which label people living in poverty as “ ‘Scroungers’, ‘Benefits Cheats’, ‘Undeserving’ – people to be pitied or people to be blamed.”
Source: Scottish Government