West Aberdeen-shire and Kinc-ardine top table

CHILD POVERTY: An issue needing addressed or under control?
CHILD POVERTY: An issue needing addressed or under control?

Campaigners have published a child poverty map of the UK, which shows that children in West Aberdeenshire and Kincardine are least in poverty.

The estimates were compiled for the group ‘Campaign to End Child Poverty’ (CECP) by the Centre for Research in Social Policy (CRSP) at Loughborough University.

CECP said the map showed “shocking levels of hardship” across the country.

The figures are broken down by parliamentary constituency, local authority and ward and show a wide disparity in poverty rates.

Children in poverty after housing costs in West Aberdeenshire and Kincardine was 9%, the lowest anywhere in the Uk.

Statistics showed high poverty levels in other rural Scottish communities, with nearly one in five children in the Western Isles and Argyll and Bute affected.

MSP Dennis Robertson said: “In a Country with such wealth it is disappointing that there is a growth in the number of Children and families in poverty.

“We are seeing a greater number of families reliant on Food Banks and this is why it is essential that all Tax and Welfare powers are devolved to the Scottish Parliament in order that we can tackle inequality.”

The campaigners want politicians at Westminster and Holyrood to act to tackle the root causes of poverty.

End Child Poverty spokesman Neil Mathers said: “These figures reveal just how widely and deeply child poverty reaches into our communities.

“Politicians of all parties, need to act to tackle the root causes of poverty, including low pay and soaring housing and childcare costs.

“We must build on the good work that is happening in Scotland.”

Sir Robert Smith said: “West Aberdeenshire and Kincardine has both the lowest level of child poverty and the lowest level of unemployment in the UK. This underlines the important role a strong economy can play in tackling child poverty.

“Liberal Democrats at Westminster are working to break the cycle of poverty with policies such as the introduction of free school meals and the pupil premium to help ensure that children get the best start in life.

“I therefore welcomed the Scottish Government’s decision to follow this lead by bringing in a free school meals policy for Scotland.”