A shocking new study has discovered that over 14 million people, 4.5 million of them children, and living in poverty.
The investigation also discovered that 12% of the total UK population is in “persistent” poverty, having spent all or most of the last four years below the breadline.
The statistics, by Social Metrics Commission, have been gathered from a new measure to calculate social disadvantage.
The commission includes experts from academia, and from organisations such as the Joseph Rowntree Foundation, the Institute for Fiscal Studies and the Royal Statistical Society.
This new formula seeks to forge a political consensus between left and right over how to track poverty.
The commission’s chair, Philippa Stroud, said: “We want to put poverty at the heart of government policymaking and ensure that the decisions that are made are genuinely made with the long term interests of those in poverty in mind.”
A government spokesperson said: “Measuring poverty is complex, and this report offers further insight into that complexity and the additional measures that can be taken into consideration.”
Sam Royston, director of policy and research at The Children’s Society, said:“While we would welcome these changes to how poverty is measured being included in official statistics, concrete action is needed to tackle the shameful scale of poverty among our children, with all the damage it can do to their wellbeing, education and life chances.”