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Children: Poverty

Volume 498: debated on Monday 26 October 2009

To ask the Secretary of State for Children, Schools and Families what estimate his Department has made of the number of children in rural areas living in poverty in each year since 1997. (293210)

I have been asked to reply:

Estimates of the number of children in rural areas living in poverty are derived from the Family Resources Survey produced by the Department for Work and Pensions. The survey is available on the Department’s website at

http://research.dwp.gov.uk/asd/frs/2007_08/frs_2007_08_report.pdf

A copy is also in the Library.

Data on rurality are only available on the Family Resources Survey since 2004/05, so no information is available prior to 2004/05.

The information that is available is given in the tables.

Due to different definitions of rurality in Scotland compared to England and Wales, and the fact that no information is collected on the Family Resources Survey covering rurality in Northern Ireland, it has not been possible to present figures for the United Kingdom as a whole. This also means that the figures in table 4 are not comparable with figures presented in the other tables.

Table 1: Number of children in rural areas in England in households with incomes below 60 per cent. of contemporary median income, 2004/05 to 2007/08, before and after housing costs

Million

Period

Before housing costs

After housing costs

2004/05

0.3

0.4

2005/06

0.3

0.4

2006/07

0.3

0.4

2007/08

0.3

0.5

Table 2: Number of children in rural areas in Wales in households with incomes below 60 per cent. of contemporary median income, 2004/05 to 2006/07 and 2005/06 to 2007/08, before and after housing costs

Million

Period

Before housing costs

After housing costs

2004/05 to 2006/07

0.1

2005/06 to 2007/08

0.1

0.1

Table 3: Number of children in rural areas in England and Wales in households with incomes below 60 per cent. of contemporary median income, 2004/05 to 2007/08, before and after housing costs

Million

Period

Before housing costs

After housing costs

2004/05

0.3

0.4

2005/06

0.3

0.5

2006/07

0.4

0.5

2007/08

0.3

0.5

Table 4: Number of children in rural areas in Scotland in households with incomes below 60 per cent. of contemporary median income, 2004/05 to 2006/07 and 2005/06 to 2007/08, before and after housing costs

Million

Period

Before housing costs

After housing costs

2004/05 to 2006/07

2005/06 to 2007/08

Notes:

1. These statistics are based on Households Below Average Income, sourced from the Family Resources Survey.

2. Small changes should be treated with caution as these will be affected by sampling error and variability in non-response.

3. The reference period for Households Below Average Income figures are single financial years. For Wales and Scotland, three years of data have had to be combined due to small sample size.

4. A ‘—’ in the table indicates that the number of children in low income households is less than 50,000 in the period.

5. The income measures used to derive the estimates shown employ the same methodology as the Department for Work and Pensions publication “Households Below Average Income”' (HBAI) series, which uses disposable household income, adjusted (or ‘equivalised’) for household size and composition, as an income measure as a proxy for standard of living.

6. For the Households Below Average Income series, incomes have been equivalised using Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) equivalisation factors.

7. Number of children in low income households have been rounded to the nearest hundred thousand.