“More than 4 million people in the UK are trapped in deep poverty, meaning their income is at least 50% below the official breadline, locking them into a weekly struggle to afford the most basic living essentials, an independent study has shown.
The Social Metrics Commission also said 7 million people, including 2.3 million children, were affected by what it termed persistent poverty, meaning that they were not only in poverty but had been for at least two of the previous three years.
Highlighting evidence of rising levels of hardship in recent years among children, larger families, lone parent households and pensioners, the commission urged the new prime minister, Boris Johnson, to take urgent action to tackle growing poverty.
The commission’s chair, Philippa Stroud, a Conservative peer, said there was a pressing need for a concerted approach to the problem. “It is time to look again at our approach to children, and to invest in our children as the future of our nation,” she said.
Campaigners said the commission showed austerity had undermined two decades of anti-poverty policy. “By cutting £40bn a year from our work and pensions budget through cuts and freezes to tax credits and benefits, the government has put progress into reverse,” said Alison Garnham, the chief executive of Child Poverty Action Group.
The commission’s membership is drawn from experts across the political spectrum, and includes representatives from the Institute for Fiscal Studies, the Joseph Rowntree Foundation and the Office of the Children’s Commissioner. It was set up in 2016 to develop a new way of measuring poverty.
It found that of 14.3 million in the UK in poverty, 4.5 million were in deep poverty – a third of all those on the breadline, and 7% of the population. In cash terms this means a couple with two children would have an income of less than £211 a week after housing costs, and a single parent with one child would be on less than £101.50 a week. …”
The population of the UK is between 65m and 66m (2017).
So these numbers mean:
14.3m = 22% of the population or more than 1 in 5 are in poverty.
7m = 10.5% have been in poverty for more than 2 years – presumably meaning that 7.3m are finding themselves in newly in poverty in recent years.
4m = 6% of the population whose income is less than 50% of breadline.
These are utterly shameful & disgusting statistics in the 6th richest country.
The Conservative Party’s austerity policies created this. IF YOU VOTED CONSERVATIVE, you should be ashamed of yourself for putting them in power to do this – and if so you should vote differently next time.
But if you voted Conservative and are not ashamed, presumably because you are too self-centred and do not care about the suffering of others, then you might want to look at your own financial circumstances, and work out whether you have been better off financially since 2010. Austerity hasn’t only impacted the already poor and made them deeply poor, it has impacted the vast majority of people in this country (but not, of course, the elite who have seen their wealth grow exponentially in the same period). In which case, rather than vote AGAINST the Conservative’s in the next General Election because of compassion for others, then perhaps you should instead vote AGAINST the Conservative’s based on your own self interest.
Either way, make the change – do not put Conservative’s back in power in the next General Election – vote for something different.