IFS expect major surge in child poverty this decade

7 May 2013

A new report today from the Institue for Fiscal Studies has predicted that in the current decade to 2020 relative child poverty will increase by 34% and absolute child poverty will increase by 55%.

The increases they project are dramatically larger than that for working age adults. The new IFS figures project an increase of 18% in relative poverty and 28% for working age adults without children across the same period of 2010 to 2020. This means that child poverty is projected to increase at double the rate that it will for working age adults with no children.

The IFS report explains that the factors in their analysis responsible for the projected surge in child poverty are the fiscal and and social security policies of the coalition government. They state: "Tax and benefit reforms introduced since April 2010 can account for almost all of the increase in child poverty projected over the next few years." (page 4, Executive Summary, http://www.ifs.org.uk/comms/r78.pdf)

Alison Garnham, Chief Executive of Child Poverty Action Group, said: “We always put our children’s needs first in family life, and we should do as a nation too. But today’s dire projections reveal we are in danger of failing the next generation. We urgently need a child poverty strategy that contains policies which deliver on important issues such as job security, living wages, and affordable housing for low income families. The security of our families and the progress of our children must move to the top of the Government’s list of priorities. If children aren’t put first, the threat of a child poverty crisis will become a reality.”

The full CPAG response, along with further background information, can be found in our press release.