EU report on child poverty: ‘This is something we just cannot accept’

Image: PA News Media

The impact on children of the war in Ukraine and rising child poverty are among the themes tackled in the 2023 annual report of the European Union Agency for Fundamental Rights (FRA).

FRA’s Fundamental Rights Report 2023 reflects on ‘the developments and shortfalls of human rights protection in the EU in 2022’, in particular the impact of Russia’s attack on Ukraine.

The report looks in particular the fundamental question of human rights for Ukraine’s citizens, including the need for targeted support for safe affordable housing for women children and integrating children in mainstream schools.

On the issue of child poverty, the FRA says that a combination of the pandemic and rising global drove even more children, almost 1 in 4, into being at risk of poverty. The EU and national governments, it says, ‘should deliver on actions under the European Child Guarantee that began in 2022 and use funds to alleviate child poverty, particularly for poor and vulnerable households such as those in single-parent, Roma and migrant families’.

‘A need for targeted support’

“Children living in poverty start their lives at a disadvantage,” says the report. “This can have serious long-term implications regarding their development, health and prospects. According to Article 3 of the Treaty on European Union, one of the combating social exclusion while promoting social justice and protecting the rights of the child.”

It also highlights a statement made by given by Nicholas Schmit, Commmissioner for Social Rights for the European Commission, at the start of the International Day for the Eradication of Poverty, when he said: “The at-risk-of-poverty or social exlusion rate for children remains higher than the rate for the general population. This is a real challenge, as children growing up in poverty or social exclusion are less likely to do well in school, enjoy good health and realise their full potential later in life.

“This is something we just cannot accept,” he added.

Click here for the report.

Author: Simon Weedy

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