Almost a third of North East Lincolnshire children living in poverty

A stock image of cash - around three in ten children live in relative low income households in northern Lincolnshire
-Credit: (Image: Christopher Bill, Unsplash)

Three in ten children are living in poverty in northern Lincolnshire and Hull.

There were 45,280 Humberside children living in relative low income households in 2022/23, according to Department for Work and Pensions data. This includes 9,039 in North East Lincolnshire.

South, Sidney Sussex and East Marsh wards had more than 1,000 children each living in relative low income households. The Child Poverty Action Group has called for the removal of the two child limit to child benefit to be a commitment from all parties in the general election.

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Based on Office for National Statistics (ONS) population figures, there were 32 per cent of children living in poverty in North East Lincolnshire in 2021/22. This is a proportion fall from a high of 35 per cent in 2019/20, but is an increase on 29 per cent of all children in 2014/15.

North Lincolnshire had exactly three in ten children in relative low income households at the beginning of 2022, Hull 35 per cent, and East Riding 23 per cent.

The number of children in poverty in 2022/23 in three of the four Humberside local authority areas are up from the year before. The greatest increase, 617, was in North East Lincolnshire. East Riding saw a fall, down 64 to 9,694. Hull has the highest number by far, by virtue of its population size. In 2022/23, there were 18,430 children in relative low income households.

In North Lincolnshire, there were 8,117 children in poverty in 2022/23. Two Scunthorpe wards, Brumby and Crosby and Park, exceeded a thousand each.

Nationally, 2.5 million 0-15 year olds across the UK were living in poverty in 2022/23, more than 20 per cent of all kids. Humberside areas have far from the severest proportions of children in poverty. Almost nine in ten children in Govanhill West, a neighbourhood in Glasgow, are growing up in poverty.

Alison Garnham, chief executive of Child Poverty Action Group and vice-chair of the End Child Poverty Coalition, said: "In a general election year, nothing should be more important to our political leaders than making things better for the country’s poorest kids. But child poverty has reached a record high, with millions of kids now facing cold homes and empty tummies.

"We know that change is possible but we need to see a commitment from all parties to scrap the two child limit and increase child benefits," she said. In autumn 2021, the government launched the Household Support Fund to support those most in need during that winter.

This programme has continued since, though it is currently due to end on September 30. Councils distribute the funding. Its use is flexible, with the expectation it primarily helps households most in need, particularly those with children and pensioners who would otherwise struggle with energy and food bills.

North Lincolnshire Council has decided this week how it will spend its £1.4m allocation from the fifth tranche of the Household Support Fund. It will be spent on a welfare assisted grant scheme, energy payment Post Office pay-out vouchers for low income pensioners, and healthy cooking classes for 1,000 low income families.

North East Lincolnshire Council's cabinet is due to decide on how to spend its latest Household Support Fund allocation of £1.6m next week. Summer holidays vouchers to help food costs for families in receipt of free school meals are part of the measures to be decided on.