Enver Solomon, Policy Director at The Children’s Society, said:
'It is vital that we do not lay blame for this country's issues solely at the doors of parents, but look much more broadly at the huge issues affecting this country's children and their families. While we welcome any additional support to help disadvantaged families, the troubled families unit has a narrow focus. The impact of austerity measures, recession and some other major issues hitting children and their families hard have largely been overlooked.
'Vast numbers of the country’s vulnerable families are being left without any help, trapped in desperate conditions, struggling with unemployment, disability, poor quality housing and in urgent need of support.
'Failure to address the impact of the recession and the government’s austerity measures on children will lead to a marked rise in the numbers forced to live in families blighted by deprivation and hardship.'
For interviews or more information, please call Beth Herzfeld in The Children’s Society media team on 020 7841 4422, or email firstname.lastname@example.org. For out-of-hours enquiries please call 07810 796 508.
For notes to editors
1. The Children’s Society joined forces with Action for Children and NSPCC earlier this month (July 6) to launch a piece of joint research - In the Eye of the Storm: Britain's forgotten children and families. It calculates the impact of the recession and austerity measures on vulnerable children for the first time. Key findings included:
- The most vulnerable families with children will be disproportionately affected by tax and benefit changes and significantly affected by other cuts in spending.
- Overall by 2015 vulnerable families will be the equivalent of £3,000 worse off each year as a result of these measures.
- A large number of families are struggling with problems such as unemployment, depression, poor quality housing and poverty, far more than government estimates suggest.
- Particularly worrying is the projected increase in the number of children living in extremely vulnerable families. Although currently fewer than 50,000, the number of children living in these families is set to almost double by 2015, to 96,000.
- For a copy of the report please visit www.childrenssociety.org.uk
2. The government states in its own report that 'this is not a piece of formal research and that these interviews and the information' is not representative of the 120,000 families deemed as 'troubled.
3. The Children’s Society wants to create a society where children and young people are valued, respected and happy. We are committed to helping vulnerable and disadvantaged young people, including children in care and young runaways. We give a voice to disabled children, help young refugees to rebuild their lives and provide relief for young carers. Through our campaigns and research, we seek to influence policy and perceptions so that young people have a better chance in life.