Today in Surrey, according to the DWP’s own statistics, there are 3,399 children living in poverty. That is 17.1% of all children in the county up to age 15. And that figure is half a percentage point higher than a year ago.
Child poverty is a political crime. It perpetuates cycles of deprivation; it reinforces poor outcomes; it causes distress to child and parent. It also lays burden on doctors, teachers and social workers to sort out the problems thrown up by living on or below the breadline. We are speaking of poor nutrition, lack of toys and decent clothes and not enough living space. We are speaking of anxiety, social neglect and stressed parents. And we are speaking of it here, in Guildford, in the twenty-first century.
Teachers get a first-hand view of the consequences of poverty. They are the front-line staff in the pandemic of want. They need our support today to secure for every child:
- Healthy regular free and fresh meals
- A hearty breakfast before learning start
- Help to catch up after the lost weeks of learning during Covid
- Books to read, games to play, friends to talk to and help with homework
- Talk, travel, social contact, play and lots of new experiences
- Parents who are engaged with learning
- A helping hand when they need it
Guildford Labour Party is the choice of many educationalists and we are proud to support the National Education Union’s No Child Left Behind Campaign to eradicate child poverty.