Magazine article Public Finance

Legal Child Poverty Targets Likely to Be Missed

Magazine article Public Finance

Legal Child Poverty Targets Likely to Be Missed

Article excerpt

legally binding target to almost wipe out child poverty in the UK by 2020, the Institute for Fiscal Studies has warned.

The Child Poverty Act 2010, passed in the 'wash-up' before the election, commits the new government to reducing relative child poverty to less than 10% by 2020. Ministers must also publish their strategy for meeting all the four targets in the Act by March 25 next year.

The new government's coalition agreement, published on May 20, included a commitment to 'maintaining the goal of ending child poverty in the UK by 2020'.

But the IFS said the document contained no 'concrete details' and the pre-election policies of both the Conservatives and Liberal Democrats were vague.

Alastair Muriel, IFS senior researcher, said the targets looked 'extremely likely to be missed' and it was unclear if there would be any sanctions for this.

He also revealed that earlier Treasury forecasts had predicted a rise in the number of children in relative poverty to 3.5 million over ten years - up from 2.8 million in 2008/09.

The warning was among findings in a new LFS report on poverty? and inequality in the UK The researchers found that changes in poverty under the previous Labour government had been uneven, falling significantly in Scotland and the Northeast but growing considerably in the Midlands. …

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