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Sunday, April 21, 2024

Poverty Levels in Scotland Broadly Stable

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Latest Accredited Official Statistics and Official Statistics published

Covering the period until March 2023, the latest statistics show little recent change in poverty levels for children and pensioners.

Poverty for working-age adults is slightly higher than in recent years, which could be driven by people becoming economically inactive as a result of the pandemic.

The four child poverty measures in the Child Poverty (Scotland) Act (relative and absolute poverty, combined low income and material deprivation, and persistent poverty) are broadly stable over the recent period.

These measures are based on single-year figures which tend to fluctuate year on year, and the three-year averages provide a robust indication of trends.

While the poverty risk is much lower for children where someone in the household is in paid work compared to those in workless households, not all work pays enough to lift the household above the poverty line.

Over two thirds of children in poverty live in a household with someone in paid work.

This proportion has increased markedly over the past decade or so as more people move into employment.        

Other key points are:

  • Working-age adults (21%) and pensioners (15%) are less likely to be in relative poverty after housing costs compared to children (24%).
  • Relative poverty has been broadly stable for all age groups. Adults under 25 are more likely to be in poverty than older adults.
  • Minority ethnic households are more likely to be in poverty compared to white British households. Muslim adults have higher rates of poverty compared to adults of Christian and those with no religion. Some of this difference may be explained by these households being younger.
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