Camden and Haringey badly hit by child poverty, new figures show

Children living in Camden and Haringey are enduring some of the highest levels of deprivation in the country.

The Campaign to End Child Poverty has published new figures showing just over a third of children in both boroughs – 36 per cent – are living below the poverty line.

The report shows Camden and Haringey fall just outside the top 10 most affected areas of the UK – the two boroughs are ranked in joint 12th place.

The highest levels of child poverty in London were recorded in Tower Hamlets, while Westminster came fifth, with 39 per cent of children living in privation.

David Holmes, chair of the Campaign to End Child Poverty, said: “These figures reveal just how widely and deeply child poverty reaches into our communities, even those areas generally regarded as well off.

“Far too many children, whose parents are struggling to make a living, are suffering as a result and missing out on the essentials of a decent childhood. We can and must do better for our children.”

The campaign called on politicians to set out a roadmap to tackle child poverty.

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Camden cabinet member for children, Cllr Angela Mason, said of the 36 per cent child poverty level in the borough: “It’s a terrible figure and in a great deal of our work it’s a priority to do what we can to try and address that.”

Among other initiatives the council is working to increase opportunities for mothers to get back into work and to provide breakfast clubs at all primary schools.

“Whatever the deprivation experience of the child we want to make sure they have the best start in life,” said Cllr Mason.

Her counterpart in Haringey, Cllr Ann Waters, said regeneration, better housing and access to jobs were the best ways out of poverty.

But the cabinet member for children and families added: “The coalitions’ austerity regime has reversed the progress Labour had made overall into tackling child poverty and has worked against the efforts we have made in Haringey.

“Research shows that the benefit cap has failed in its main objectives and only a few households have been able to get back into work.”