Child poverty: 1.36 million children living in families with significant barriers to work

There are 440,000 children living in poverty despite their parent/s working full-time jobs – busting the myth that all families can “work their way out of poverty”.

As recently as November, prime minister Rishi Sunak said: “The absolute best way to ensure that children do not grow up in poverty is to ensure that they do not grow up in a workless household.”

However, for some years now the number of families living in poverty while in work has been increasing – in 2019/20, 75% of children living in poverty were in families with at least one adult in full or part-time work.

And for many families, increasing the hours they work or accessing work at all is difficult, according to a new study from Action for Children.

It states: “For many families, their capacity to work more hours to escape poverty and deprivation is severely constrained. Some are already working full-time, often in low-paid jobs. Others are unable to work more hours due to parental disability or ill-health or because they’re caring for a disabled child.

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