Abstracts: June 7th, 2010

Figures published by the Department for Work and Pensions show that in 2008/09 there was a slight fall in child and pensioner poverty, but a rise in the number of working age adults in poverty. The proxy for the poverty line is set at those living at or below 60 per cent of median income.

In 2008/09 there were 2.8 million children living in poverty. This represents a fall of 0.1m compared to 2007/089. In 1998/99 there were 3.4 million children living in poverty and the latest figures represents a fall of 0.6m. The 1998 target to reduce child poverty by half by 2010 appears to be unattainable with just two more years remaining.

The figures also show that there were 2.3 million pensioners living in relative poverty and this represents a fall of 0.2m compared to 2007/08.

Poverty is increasing for working age adults. In 2008/09 there were 5.8 million living in relative poverty and this represents a rise of 0.2m. The number of people in working-age poverty is the highest since records began.

Households Below Average Income: An analysis of the income distribution 1994/95 – 2008/09 is available from DWP. http://research.dwp.gov.uk/asd/hbai/hbai_2009/pdf_files/full_hbai10.pdf