13 Jun 2013

Our response to Household Below Average Income (HBAI) statistics

Matthew Reed, Chief Executive of The Children’s Society, said:

'There are now 2.4 million children in working households living in absolute poverty - an unacceptable truth about life in Britain today. 

'Latest figures also reveal that in that in 2010-11, 300,000 more children faced a real fall in living standards that pushed them into absolute poverty. The entire increase is from homes where parents are working. 

'Government statistics paint a depressing picture indeed. Yet the situation could be even worse than today’s figures indicate[*].

'It is shameful that, as one of the richest countries in the world, child poverty is being allowed to increase - 3.8 million children living in absolute poverty is neither inevitable nor acceptable. The government must take radical action to get the fight to tackle child poverty back on track.'

[*] Experts have indicated that half a million more children are likely to be in absolute poverty in 2013 than when these latest statistics were recorded in 2011. (Return to text.)


Media enquiries

For more information, please call Beth Herzfeld in The Children’s Society media team on 020 7841 4422, 07775 812 357 or email beth.herzfeld@childrenssociety.org.uk. For out-of-hours enquiries please call 07810 796 508. 

Notes to editors

  • Today’s HBAI statistics also show that Britain’s poorest families are suffering a real fall in their income.
  • Today’s HBAI figures reveal that 300,000 more children are in absolute low income poverty in 2011/12 than in 2010/11 – there are now 3.8 million children in absolute low income poverty (after housing costs). The Institute for Fiscal Studies predicted that in 2013 (today) the absolute poverty figure is estimated to be 500,000 higher than this (4.3 million) http://www.ifs.org.uk/comms/r78.pdf
  • Around two thirds of living in poverty are in low-income working families.
  • Levels of children in relative income poverty saw no change between 2010/11 and 2011/12.  However, the IFS have warned there are likely to be 400k more children in relative income poverty today than in 2011.
  • 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.