CHILD poverty is expected to rise to 50,000 children in the next two years in Glasgow.

The city council has said reducing child poverty will be a challenge and rather than meeting ambitious targets it is expected to rise by more than 10,000.

The target is to reduce the number of children in poverty in 2023 to less than 18% of children living in relative poverty.

In Glasgow that would mean taking 36,000 out of combined poverty in the next four years.

However, a series of factors including welfare reforms and particularly benefit sanctions, universal credit, and in work poverty, where parents, often lone parents, are in part time low paid insecure work is leading to a worsening of the problem.

Currently poverty in the city is at one third of all children but that masks the true picture in certain communities where it is as high as almost half.

Glasgow Times:

Child poverty in Glasgow ranges from 11% in Partick East/ Kelvindale and 14% in Victoria Park wards the only two out of 23 wards where it is below 20%, to 41% in Canal, which includes Possilpark, Milton and Ruchill and 49% in Calton in the east end.

Almost every ward 21 out of 23 is above the target of 18% and to meet it across the city would be an astonishing achievement based on current figures and projections.

In a report to councillors, Allan Gow the City Treasurer, said the external factors and indicators pointing to an increase.

He said: “The levels of Child Poverty in Glasgow are amongst the highest in Scotland and the scale of the challenge for the Council and Health Board is significant.

“It is important to note that child poverty levels in Glasgow are expected to increase as a result of economic and welfare changes. The levels of child poverty continue to be a serious issue in the city, with distribution of child poverty across the city varying from ward to ward.”

He noted the impact of benefit cuts hitting many families in a city like Glasgow hard.

Mr Gow added: “Those citizens already struggling to make ends meet will need more support from city services. The Scottish Government Annual Report 2017 Welfare Reform Act 2012 highlights the loss to the Glasgow economy from 2015 to 2020/2021 as a result of welfare reform to be £120 million.”

A lone parent family with two children are defined to be living in poverty if they are living on less than £306 per week after housing costs have been deducted.

For a two parent family with two children if they are living on less than £413 a week after housing costs have been deducted, they are classed as being in poverty.

According to reports almost half of all children experiencing poverty in Glasgow are living in a household where someone is working.

The council highlighted examples of how it can try and ease the financial burden of those living in poverty.

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The school clothing grant has been increased to £110 a year which 28,000 children qualify for and the holiday hunger programme rolled out across the city with £2m investment to community groups offering activities with a meal at lunchtime as well.

However, the council treasurer said spending cuts was impacting on how much could be done to help.

Mr Gow added: “Reduced levels of Public Sector Finance Budgets is a key risk for reducing the levels of child poverty in the city. The public sector is facing more uncertainty and change in the years ahead in terms of funding.”