Are fewer children in poverty?

The pledge to eradicate child poverty has been a source of great pride for Labour supporters but also some frustration, with dramatic progress in the wake of the 1997 election faltering badly more recently. David Cameron has committed the Conservatives to meet Labour’s new target of eradicating child poverty by 2020. But for MPs elected this year, 2020 may as well be in the next geological period and there is a danger that
the target will be warmly supported but progress toward it in the next Parliament will be negligible.
The Test:
With 2.3 million children in the UK still likely to be living in poverty at the time of the election, any government remotely serious about meeting the 2020 target of eradication will have to demonstrate significant progress during the next Parliament. So, by 2015, the absolute minimum requirement would be to reduce the proportion of children living in poverty in the UK (26 per cent in 1999) from 18 per cent now to 13 per cent (the missed 2010 target set in the optimistic days of 1999).
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