Policy, Strategy & Guidance
Analysis from the End Child Poverty Network Cymru
- Click here to read the child poverty manifesto commitments of the four main political parties in Wales which were launched for the National Assembly for Wales election on 5th May 2011.
- Click here to read the ECPN Cymru child poverty manifesto.
- Click here to read the ECPN briefing on the latest national statistics on Households Below Average Income (HBAI), produced by the UK Government's Department for Work and Pensions and were released on 12th May 2011.
- Click here to read the ECPN analysis of the impact of the Welfare Reform Bill in Wales and what action the Welsh Government could take to mitigate these.
The Latest policy context in Wales
The Welsh Government website contains up to date information, links and resources regarding government action on child poverty in Wales. Click here to review their information on:
- the Child Poverty Strategy,
- the Child Poverty Milestones and Targets,
- the new Guidance and Regualtions for Welsh Authorities and,
- the Children & Familes (Wales) Measure.
Also find out more about the Child Trust Fund Cymru, the policy links between child poverty and childrens human rights and more about Families First.
The Welsh Assembly Government is driving forward a cross cutting agenda for improving the lives of children and young people, based on partnership working and implementing the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child. All policies and programmes for children and young people should contribute to the seven core aims that summarise these rights. Core aim 7 states that we must ensure children and young people in Wales are not disadvantaged by poverty. Also see Child Poverty Solutions Core Aims section.
Welsh Government Cabinet Statements
- Written statement from Leighton Andrews; Education Minister: Almost £1 million to help 16-17 year olds into work (Feb 2011)
- Childcare Policy Starement: Nurturing Children, Supporting Families: Our policy priorities for childcare (2011)
- Written statement from Huw Lewis; Deputy Minister for Children : Update on the Child Poverty Strategy and Delivery Plan for Wales (2010)
- Written statement from Huw Lewis; Deputy Misister for Children : Update on the Child Poverty Expert Group (2010)
- Written statement from Dr Brian Gibbons; as Minister for Social Justice and Local Government : Update on Child Poverty (2009)
- Written cabinet statement from Dr Brian Gibbons; as Minister for Social Justice and Local Government : Update on Child Poverty (2008)
Other written and oral statements are available by completing the search criteria here.
The Welsh Government has re-affirmed its commitment to the 2020 target of eradicating poverty by 2020. Evidence shows that progress was made in Wales up to 2010 in recent years with poverty rates for children down to below the UK average for the first time. However, latest figures show that progress on tackling child poverty has now stalled in Wales (HBAI) with an increase of 1% from 32% living at or below 60% of median UK income to 33% in 2011. Projections for the UK from the IFS predict that by 2014 child poverty will have increased back to 1997 levels due to the effects of recession and changes in UK tax and benefits. This suggests that much of the policy and delivery against eradicating child poverty has been largely ineffective. It also suggests that use of the tax and benefits system is not a sustainable way to tackle child poverty and that we need to find new ways to uplift children and young people out of a context of poverty. Professor David Egan discusses the close association between high levels of skills and relative economic prosperity at individual and country level is a powerful and enduring one and that education in Wales must do better. Also see Tackling Child Poverty
Welsh Government policy in this area has been shaped in recent years by the report of the independent Child Poverty Task Group in June 2004; the Child Poverty Strategy, ‘A Fair Future for our Children', published in February 2005 and by the proposals set out in the Child Poverty Implementation Plan, published in May 2006. Using a Written Statement published on 20 February 2008 the Minister for Social Justice and Local Government confirmed that Ministers were aware of the need to continue to build on the impetus of efforts in Wales and that future Welsh Government action will focus on three strands:
- Strand 1 - Improving life opportunities for disadvantaged children;
- Strand 2 - Financial inclusion initiatives; and
- Strand 3 - Encouraging greater uptake of the UK Government tax and benefits support.
Most recently the Welsh Government has affirmed it's commitment to ending child poverty by the introduction of the Children & Families (Wales) Measure 2010 and the Child Poverty Strategy for Wales 2011.
Read more about the Children and Families Wales Measure here.
Child Poverty Strategy for Wales
The Child Poverty Strategy is arranged into four sections
- Section 1 outlines the methodology used to define and measure poverty and explains our three strategic priorities for the eradication of poverty.
- Section 2 focuses on the twin goals of helping people enter paid employment and helping them progress to better paid jobs.
- Section 3 focuses on the goal of reducing inequality so that the outcomes for the poorest do not worsen and that they are able to close the gap with their better-off peers.
- Section 4 summarises those actions being taken by the Welsh Government to ameliorate the effects on children living in poverty.
Click here to download the full Child Poverty Strategy for Wales 2011.
Click here to download the 2010 Draft Delivery Plan for Wales that was used during the consultation period.
Clck here to read the first draft Child Poverty Strategy documents from the Welsh Government website.
Tackling Child Poverty: Guidance and Regulations for Welsh Authorities
This area of the Welsh Government website sets out the duties placed upon Welsh Authorities as detailed in Section 6 of the Children and Families (Wales) Measure 2010. It aims to give a clear account of what Welsh Authorities need to do in order to fulfil the duty placed upon them to tackle child poverty in Wales between 2011–2014.
The full Guidance and Regulations for Welsh Authorities can be downloaded here.
Previous Deputy Minister for Children, Huw Lewis announced in March 2010 three new Families First pioneer areas. Click here to download his statement.
- Click here to read the Welsh Government's General Background Note for Families First for External Stakeholders from DCELLS.
- Click here to read the Guidance for invitation to become a Families First pioneer.
- Download The Efficiency and Innovation Board's (EIB) New Models of Service Delivery Group report for SOLACE Wales.
- Click here for the Families First Programme Guidance issued in July 2011
Children & Young People's Plans Interim Guidance 2011 to 2014
The document outlines Welsh Governments expectations of Children and Young People's partnerships in addressing the new duty relating to the eradication of child poverty. Click here to read the draft guidance.
Health Social Care and Well-being Strategy Guidance 2010
Up to date information from the Welsh Government on the Health, social care and well-being strategy guidance is available here.
This guidance should be read in conjunction with the Children and Young People's Plans. Each local authority and each Local Health Board is under a statutory duty to jointly formulate and implement a health, social care and well-being strategy for the public in the local authority's area.
Each local authority is under a statutory duty to publish a children and young people's plan (CYPP) setting out the authority's strategy for discharging its functions in relation to children and young persons.
See above for the latest on CYPP Interim Guidance 2011-14.
Nurturing Children, Supporting Families: our policy priorities for childcare 2011
This document sets out the actions that will be taken forward in the short, medium and longer term to ensure that all families are given the opportunity to experience high-quality, affordable, accessible childcare.
Do You Work for a Communities First Partnership?
Did you know that the Welsh Government has published child poverty guidance for you? Click here if you want to read through Working with Children, Young People & Families - Tackling Child Poverty: Guidance for Communities First Partnerships. Also have a look at our 'Make it Happen' pages especially for Communities First teams, use the link or click in the blue box above.
Children & Families (Wales) Measure
Click here for up to date information and a plain English interpretation of The Children & Families(Wales) Measure 2010 for public authorities in Wales.
A New Approach to Child Poverty: Tackling the Causes of Disadvantage and Transforming Families' Lives
This is the UK Government's first national Child Poverty Strategy, setting out a new approach to tackling poverty for this Parliament and up to 2020. It's focus includes:
- strengthening families,
- encouraging responsibility,
- promoting work,
- guaranteeing fairness and
- providing support to the most vulnerable
Click here to download the UK child poverty strategy.
The Child Poverty Act 2010: A short guide
Similar to the Children & Families (Wales) Measure the Child Poverty Act places new duties on public bodies in England, Scotland and Northern Ireland with regard to tackling child poverty. A plain English guide to the Child Poverty Act is available here.
The Equality Act 2010
Having received Royal Assent in April 2010, the Equality Act 2010 is intended to provide a new cross-cutting legislative framework to protect the rights of individuals and advance equality of opportunity for all. In essence the Act asks public bodies in the UK to conduct equality impact assessments. To find out more about how the Act will inform your child poverty work click here for the UK Government Equalities Commission or go to the Equality and Human Rights Commission for a plain English interpretation.
Opening Doors, Breaking Barriers: A Strategy for Social Mobility
A fair society is an open society, one in which every individual is free to succeed. The coalition government state that improving social mobility is their principal social policy goal. This strategy sets out their vision of a socially mobile country, and how it can become a reality.
Click here to download the Social Mobility Strategy for England
Child Poverty Strategy for Scotland
The strategy focuses on two principal aims:
Maximising household resources – Income poverty and material deprivation will be reduced, by maximizing household incomes and reducing pressure on household budgets among low income families.
Improving children's wellbeing and life chances – This requires a focus on tackling the underlying social and economic determinants of poverty, and improving the circumstances in which children grow up – recognising the particular importance of improving children's outcomes in the early years.
Click here to download the Child Poverty Strategy for Scotland.
Child Poverty Work at the UK Level
Here the Department for Work and Pensions has published information on the UK Government response to child poverty including information on the new Child Poverty Act 2010 and the Equality Act 2010. Also see the Every Child Matters website.
The UK witnessed a dramatic growth in income inequality in the 1980s, and since then the level of inequality has increased further, though at a slower rate. But should we be concerned about this? This report provides an independent review of the evidence about the impact of inequality, paying particular attention to the evidence and arguments put forward in 'The Spirit Level' by Richard Wilkinson and Kate Pickett (2009).
In 2007, UNICEF’s Report Card 7: An overview of child well-being in rich countries, put the issue of child well-being firmly on the UK’s political agenda. When compared with 20 other OECD countries, including substantially poorer ones, the UK was at the bottom of the league table of child well-being. Subsequent Report Cards have shown that inequality among children in the UK is greater than in other countries.
This Commentary analyses recent trends in household spending, with a focus on domestic fuel and water, and examines the impact of changes in the price of these goods on household inflation, particularly for those on low incomes and those for whom state benefits make up the largest component of their income ('benefit-dependent' households).
This paper highlights policies and provision that exist for young people not in education, employment or training in Wales. Strategies can cut across many different policy areas and are developed at UK, Welsh and local level. The picture of provision is complex. The paper looks at some of the challenges that exist for policy makers and agencies working in this policy field, and examines stakeholder views on what types of support work best for young people not in education, employment or training or at risk of becoming so. It also highlights some of the particular challenges facing these young people.