Child Poverty Bill consultation receives “overwhelming” support
The Scottish Government will introduce the Bill in the new year
Poverty - Photo credit: Holyrood
The Scottish Government’s plans to tackle the deep rooted causes of child poverty have received “overwhelming” support.
The majority of those who responded to the Child Poverty Bill consultation agreed with the government’s plans to introduce long-term, ambitious child poverty targets.
Equalities Secretary Angela Constance said it is “simply unacceptable” that children are growing up in poverty in Scotland.
She added: “The aim of the consultation was to hear from organisations and people who deal with the effects of child poverty on a daily basis and understand what changes they see as vital to achieving our goal.
“It’s encouraging to get that feedback and to see overwhelming support for the proposals we consulted on, including setting ambitious statutory targets and publishing regular delivery plans and reporting annually.
“I will be bringing forward a Child Poverty Bill in the new year based on the consultation, ensuring that tackling child poverty in Scotland remains front and centre.”
The Scottish Government also released its annual report on the child poverty measurement framework.
It showed improvement in a number of areas, including:
- the employment rate gap between the most deprived areas and the rest of Scotland has narrowed
- the percentage of school leavers from the most deprived areas who are in positive destinations has increased
- the employment rate of parents has increased while the percentage of parents with low or no qualifications has decreased
John Dickie, director of the Child Poverty Action Group (CPAG) in Scotland, said: “With a totally unacceptable one in five of Scotland’s children still living in poverty it’s clear government at every level needs to ratchet up commitment to ending that poverty.
“The Scottish Government’s proposed Child Poverty Bill is a vital step toward that – setting out clear ambitions with income based targets to build on the areas of progress this year’s report highlights.
“It’s now essential that the new bill includes clear duties setting out the role of local government and its partners, and that Government has a duty to report to Parliament on progress in the years ahead.”
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