Children in Poverty

Children in low income families: local area statistics

These experimental Official Statistics on the number (and proportion) of children living in low income families across Great Britain by local area were first released in the March 2021.

Interactive Map: Children in Relative Poverty by sub-county area

NOTE: DWP have advised caution when comparing the latest two years of data with previous years as some of the data sources were affected during COVID due to difficulties in collection.  The data suggests that child poverty in the North East and its 12 local authorities, has fallen.  Local free school meal data, (a good proxy measure for poverty), in County Durham has continued to rise.  Further details can be found on the Free School Meals page.

Local Children in Poverty Dashboard

 

Key Messages (Children aged 0 to 19) 2022/23

Relative Poverty (Provisional Estimates)

Current: 19.3% (22,199 children estimated) of children under the age of 19 were estimated to be living in relative poverty  (NE: 20.5%; England: 19.5%)

        • The current release estimates that the proportion of children in relative poverty in the county has, for the first time, fallen beneath the England proportion, while across the North East the proportion remains above both areas.
        • In the financial year 2022/23 an estimated 19.3% of children under the age of 19 were living in relative poverty in County Durham.  Across the North East the figure was higher at 20.5% while nationally (England) the figure was 19.5%.
        • This is an increase from 18.4% in 2014/15, with the number of children in living in relative poverty rising from an estimated 19,500 (aged children under 19) to around 22,200, an increase of 13.6%.
        • Across the North East the number of children in relative poverty increased by 19%, while across England the figure increased by 31%.

Absolute Poverty (Provisional Estimates)

Current: 15% (17,279 children) of children under the age of 19 were estimated to be living in absolute poverty (NE: 16.1%; England: 15.4%)

        • The current release estimates that the proportion of children in absolute poverty in the county has, for the first time, fallen beneath the England proportion, while across the North East the proportion remains above both areas.
        • In the financial year 2022/23 an estimated 15% of children under the age of 19 were living in absolute poverty in County Durham.  Across the North East the figure was slightly higher at 16.1% while nationally (England) the figure was 15.4%.
        • This is a fall from 18.4% in 2014/15, with the number of children in living in absolute poverty falling from an estimated 21,000 (aged children under 19) to around 17,300, a fall of 17.6%.
        • Across the North East the number of children in absolute poverty fell by 12.7%, while across England the figure increased by 3.1%.

Definitions and Links

Links

Definitions

Term Definition
Children Dependent individuals aged under 16; or aged 16 to 19 in full-time non-advanced education. Figures on the proportion of children living in low income families are derived for children under 16 as a percentage of the under 16 population.
Family A single adult; or a married or cohabitating couple; or a Civil Partnership; and any dependent children.
Equivalised income Income is gross income Before Housing Costs (BHC) and includes contributions from earnings, state support and pensions. Equivalisation adjusts incomes for family size and composition; taking an adult couple with no children as the reference point.
Relative low income A family in low income Before Housing Costs (BHC) in the reference year. A family must have claimed one or more of Universal Credit, Tax Credits or Housing Benefit at any point in the year to be classed as low income in these statistics.
Absolute low income A family in low income Before Housing Costs (BHC) in the reference year in comparison with incomes in 2010/11. A family must have claimed one or more of Universal Credit, Tax Credits or Housing Benefit at any point in the year to be classed as low income in these statistics.
Work status A family is defined as ‘in-work’ if they have an accumulated period of at least 26 weeks paid employment or self-employment within the 52-week tax year.
Family type Family type accounts for changes in family composition throughout the year (for example, re-partnering, multiple partners). A Lone Parent family type means the parent/guardian has had no partnerships at any point in the year.