The Government record on child poverty is shockingly bad. Child poverty is as bad as it was five years ago. The number of children in "official" poverty is 4 million while the number of children in deeper poverty is 2.7 million. Worse still, child poverty is rising. 400,000 more children have fallen into poverty since 2004. Child poverty is now as high as it was six years ago.
The figures highlight a stark message. After great progress 5-10 years ago, the war against child poverty is increasingly being lost under Gordon Brown.
Worryingly, "official" child poverty is set quite high. So the Government concentrates on getting the richest of the poor "over the line". As a result, children living in deeper poverty, where help is most needed, can get left behind. A Government that cared would have focused on the poorest of poor children. But not this one. This one focusses on the richest of the poor to meet their target of tackling "official" child poverty. It’s all a bit like the Tin Man: no heart.
Charlie Elphicke believes that child poverty is not just offensive - it damages our country's future prospects as well. Children in poverty are less likely to do well at school, are more likely to get into crime and underachieve. Every child has a right to achieve its fullest potential and we need to do more to help our kids be all they can be. Charlie believes we should help children in deepest deprivation first of all.