Children and young people are becoming the “frontline victims of the recession”, due to falls in family income and reduced job prospects, the Children’s Society said today.
A survey of more than 1,000 young people aged 11 to 19 found the downturn was having a significant impact on children’s lives, with 7% of 11-16 year olds saying one of their parents had recently lost their job.
Jobs and pocket money squeezed
More than a quarter of 11 to 13-year-olds said their pocket money had been cut, while a fifth of this age group said their parents would not be taking them on holiday this year.
But the most worrying finding, according to the charity, was that 22% of 17-19 year olds were struggling to find a job because of the recession.
This was “alarming”, according to the Children’s Society, because 9.5% of young people in the UK are not in education, employment or training (NEETs).
One in five 11-13 year olds and more than one in four 17-19 year olds said they were worried about news reports showing the bleak economic picture.
Action urgently needed
Bob Reitemeier, chief executive of the Children’s Society, said: “The results of this survey confirm our fears that children are frontline victims of the recession.”
The study, carried out by researchers from Nfp Synergy, follows the Good Childhood inquiry by the Children’s Society, which found Britain had the largest proportion of households in Europe where no parent was working.
It also called on the government to make “much more serious efforts” in attempts to succeed in its pledge to eradicate child poverty by 2020.
Expert guide to child poverty
The Children’s Society