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Friday, November 26, 2010

Labour's big failure

This morning's Western Mail reports that increasing numbers of children in Wales are growing up in poverty despite living in households where a parent is in employment.

They say that despite the fact that the Welsh Government is committed to eradicating child poverty by 2020, the latest official figures reveal a falling-back in key areas:

Of the 32 indicators used to measure the depth of child poverty in Wales, just 10 showed a “clear improvement” and there was evidence of a “clear deterioration” in three.

In 2006-07, a quarter of children lived in homes where an adult worked, yet they were still in poverty. The most recent data shows that this increased to 26.7% in 2008-09.

Children are considered to be living in poverty if their household income is below 60% of the average income. This means that couples with two children are in this category if they take home £322 in earnings a week or less.

There are also signs of widening inequality when it comes to educational performance. Two indicators show there is a growing gap among 15-year-olds between the results of children who qualify for free school meals and those who do not.

Just 20.1% of those qualifying for free school meals gained the equivalent of five GCSEs at grade A* to C, including English or Welsh and Maths. This compared with 52% of pupils who did not qualify for free meals.

The performance gap between the two groups had increased from 29.5% in 2006 to 31.9% in 2009.

This is Labour's legacy, their big failure at both UK and Welsh levels. They set targets that they failed to meet and now they have bequeathed the problem to the UK Coalition Government and of course to the fag end of their own administration in Cardiff Bay. So much for their claim to be the champions of social justice.
It's mid-afternoon, and you still haven't had a riposte blaming the bankers and the Conservative-Liberal Democrat coalition government. What's wrong with the Labour email machine?
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