Number of Working Families living in Poverty Rises

Posted on 23 December, 2013 by Kirsten Kennedy

Many of us will now be getting into the full swing of the festive celebrations and anticipating a few days of over-indulgence. Yet, for those on low incomes, Christmas can bring a whole new set of pressures and push family budgets to the limit.

In a study, entitled Monitoring Poverty and Social Exclusion, conducted by the Joseph Rowntree Foundation (JRF) it was discovered that obtaining work no longer necessarily means an automatic escape from poverty and, in fact, could make British families worse off.

Of the 13 million living below the poverty line in the country today, 6.7 million come from working families – meaning that, for the first time ever, there are more working families than non-working families living in poverty.

A large contributory factor to this is the average 8 per cent plunge in average income since 2008. This has meant that around 2 million adults on today’s wage would have been below the poverty line in 2008, yet due to inflation are currently above the poverty line in today’s terms.

Chief executive of the JRF, Julia Unwin, believes something must urgently be done to ease the burden upon working families.

She says; “Hard work is not working.

“We have a labour market that lacks pay and protection, with jobs offering precious little security and paltry wages that are insufficient to make ends meet.”

Fortunately, the JRF did note several positive factors in the study, such as the fact that the number of pensioners living below the poverty line has hit the lowest level for 30 years. Furthermore, improvements in health and education outcomes in the longer term have led to a decrease in unemployment and underemployment, making for a more productive and therefore satisfied workforce.

Following the release of the report, the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) denied that work is no longer the best way for British families to get above the poverty line.

A spokesman said; “Despite claims to the contrary, work absolutely remains the best route out of poverty – children in workless families are around three times more likely to be in poverty than those in working families.

“Our welfare reforms are designed to further increase work incentives and improve the lives of some of the poorest families in our communities, with the Universal Credit making three million households better off.

“And as this report recognises, we have helped to revive the labour market with record employment and over a million extra jobs created since 2010.”

With Christmas only two days away, families will be picking up last minute items for the big day. Sadly, this festive season may not prove to be as merry for those workers still failing to break through the poverty barrier.




Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


Recent Posts

Aldi’s Expansion Plan

British Steel on the verge of collapse with over 20,000 jobs at risk

Paris watches as flames engulf one of France’s most famous landmarks

Debenhams on the brink of administration as board reject Ashley’s bid

Emmanuel Macron pushes for a new Europe with European Parliament elections on the horizon

Brexit impacts property market

Brexit uncertainty impacts the property market

Oxford_Street_Selfridges_Christmas_Decorations_2017

Creative Christmas window displays

Toronto downtown skyscrapers

Brief history of skyscrapers

Savvy promotions attract early Christmas sales for retailers

Are savvy promotions attracting Christmas sales for retail stores?

Greenfield developments

Greenfield developments: The facts

facts about converting chapels churches

Things to consider when investing in church or chapel conversions

Lincoln Castle 1068

Exploring Lincoln Castle’s Georgian and Victorian Prison

the leopard inn Burslem

Facts about The Leopard Inn, Stoke-on-Trent

ancient high house Stafford

The majestic Ancient High House in Stafford

retro video game arcades

Retro video game arcades: The comeback

industrial style offices

How to achieve an industrial inspired office