Students speak to Alan Milburn about ending child poverty
Young people from our Genesis project in Greenwich joined us on 13 December for Alan Milburn's first speech as the government's independent reviewer on child poverty and social mobility. This is their report.
On Tuesday we went to St Albans Centre in London to listen to Rt Hon Alan Milburn’s speech on child poverty (full text). He spoke for 30 minutes about child poverty in Britain and the importance of targeting and supporting children who are under age 5.
We had the chance to meet with him afterwards and we asked him some questions.
Supporting young people
Alyisha asked what the government was doing to help young people when they leave school and want to find employment.
Mr Milburn responded by saying that it probably was not enough – we are living in tough times but schools need to play their part and young people need to work to get good grades as well.
Jordeen asked if Mr Milburn had a positive message for us to bring back to school. 'The more you learn, the more you earn', he said. He went on to say that a good education and gaining qualifications were key in order to become successful and have nice things.
Child poverty in the UK and beyond
Mr Milburn also said that he was travelling to Sierra Leone in January with Tony Blair because they've set up a charity to help people there. He went on to say that the life expectancy there was much lower than in Britain and that living conditions were difficult.
Teresa commented that it was unfair for people to live in poverty around the world but that there was a need for MPs to visit estates in Britain where children find it tough to grow up. Mr Milburn said that this was a good point and that he was going on to another meeting with the Education Minister Michael Gove and would raise this.
With that he had to go, but before he left he said that we could email him if we had any more questions.
We enjoyed attending this event, we thought that Alan Milburn seemed to care about children and felt he wanted to do something to tackle child poverty. Finally, We would like to say thank-you to The Children’s Society for inviting us to attend.
By Alyisha Pillai, Jordeen Buckley, Jessica Culver, Teresa Felix and Donnell Anderson, students at Conisborough College