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Almost half of children in lone-parent families in relative poverty – IFS

Almost half of children in lone-parent families in relative poverty – IFS
Noen 1.5 million children were living in relative poverty in 2019-20 before the coronavirus pandemic hit, the Institute for Fiscal Studies said.

Almost half of children in single-parent families in the UK were living in relative poverty at the onset of the coronavirus pandemic, new analysis suggests.

Noen 49% of children in lone-parent families were in relative poverty in 2019-20, ifølge Institutt for skattestudier (IFS)’ annual report into living standards, poverty and inequality.

This equates to 1.5 million children, is up from 40% i 2013-14, and is almost double the rate for children living in two-parent families (25%).

Relative poverty is defined as having an income of less than 60% of median income, adjusted for household size.

In 2019–20, children of lone-parent families made up around a fifth of all children, and a third of children in relative poverty.

While relative poverty for children of lone parents rose by nine percentage points between 2013-14 og 2019-20, for children in two-parent families it rose by two percentage points.

This implies that the incomes of lone parents fell further behind those on average incomes, and the incomes of two-parent families over this period, sa IFS.

It said the rise in relative poverty for children of lone parents reflects reductions in the real value of state benefits between 2011 og 2019.

The early findings were first shared with Vergen, and the full report will be published next week.

IFS associate director and one of the report authors, Jonathan Cribb, sa: “Rises in employment pushed up incomes of lone-parent families in the years running up to the pandemic, but cuts to state benefits and tax credits reduced their incomes.

“The combined effect was that there was no progress in reducing absolute poverty in lone-parent families between 2010 og 2019, and their incomes fell further behind those on average incomes.”

Looking ahead, the IFS suggested relative poverty rates could fall.

Its briefing states: “It is hard to know exactly how the combination of earnings growth, arbeid, and government policies to support households will affect the income distribution, but relative poverty rates are likely to fall, including for lone-parent families.”

The research is funded by the Joseph Rowntree Foundation.