Campaign to tackle child poverty after one in five living below the breadline

A campaign has been launched to tackle child poverty in one South Yorkshire town after research revealed that a third of children in some parts of Barnsley are living in below the breadline.

Barnsley Central MP Dan Jarvis MP

Labour MP for Barnsley Central, Dan Jarvis, has today published a new report highlighting the scale of child poverty in the town. It said more than 20 per cent of children in his constituency live in poverty, with some areas seeing as many as a third of children living in poverty.

Mr Jarvis has launched a fresh campaign calling on people in the town to suggest ‘Just One Thing’ they would change to help tackle child poverty.

Sign up to our daily newsletter

The i newsletter cut through the noise

Thousands of postcards will be distributed to members of the public, social workers, teachers, and others working in the field asking for suggestions.

People will also be asked to volunteer to help improve the life chance of Barnsley children through initiatives such as tutoring.

Mr Jarvis said: “It is not acceptable that one in five of the children who grow up in my constituency do so in poverty. I think our community can play an important role in working together to improve this situation. That’s why I am asking people for ‘Just One Thing’ to help make that change happen.”

The report examined the root causes of child poverty, including unemployment, family stability and educational opportunities and highlighted the need for the Government to work with local communities to tackle child poverty. Barnsley Central has the 157th highest level of child poverty in the country, out of 650 constituencies, and is ranked second from bottom amongst constituencies for social mobility.

More than 40 per cent of children in Barnsley are in poverty or one step away.

Coun Jenny Platts, Barnsley Council’s cabinet spokesperson for communities, said it was working on a number of projects which aim to reduce the number of local children living in poverty.