Shock Rise in Child Poverty in Wales Leaves Government Target in Tatters

March 27, 2007 5:08 PM

New Government figures have revealed that the number of children living in poverty and the number of people of working age living in poverty have risen. In addition, the gap between rich and poor has grown further.

Commenting, Jenny Willott MP said:

"These figures are deeply embarrassing for the Government - child poverty has risen to around one in three children in Wales. Poverty in Britain has taken a significant step backwards, and the gap between rich and poor continues to grow under Labour.

"The Government's ambition to cut child poverty now looks in tatters - with Labour likely to miss its 2010 child poverty target by over 50,000 children and Wales over 1 million across the UK.

"Overall poverty has soared with higher poverty amongst children and poverty in people of working age in Wales jumping by over 25,000 people.

"The New Labour legacy is depressing - Britain has become a more unequal place to live, as the Government's own figures now show.

"It is clear that Brown's unhealthy and expensive concoction of complex tax credits and benefits is failing to help the millions of Britain's living in poverty.

"We need more commitment to the goal of cutting child poverty - with extra investment in education and childcare for the poorest children and a reduction in regressive taxes. Better housing, more employment support, and a more stable and effective benefits system are also essential.

"Without a radical upgrading of policy in these areas, one of the most important ambitions of this Government is not going to be delivered."

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