16% of children in deep poverty

AN ESTIMATED 16% of children in Sheffield are living in deepest poverty, according to the Save the Children charity.

Although figures indicate other places have much higher levels, there are still 15,000 children in the city in severe poverty. With increasing unemployment and cuts in welfare payments, the charity fears that even more youngsters will be affected without urgent and concerted action.

It wants to see the Government adopt its measurement of severe child poverty, which combines both income and material deprivation.

It says a lone-parent family with one child aged under 14 in severe poverty is living on an income of less than £7,000 and a couple with two children under 14 is on less than £12,500.

These families are also going without things that are largely taken for granted, such as separate bedrooms for older boys and girls, not being able to celebrate birthdays or special events properly and being unable to build friendships by having children round for tea.

Manchester and Tower Hamlets have the highest proportion in severe child poverty, at 27%.