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Half Of Welsh Single Parents Living In Poverty

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WALES is a country where three-quarters of disabled people are out of work, half of single parents live in poverty and women earn 19% less than men, according to a report that reveals the “uncomfortable” truth about inequality.

Today’s report by the Equalities and Human Rights Commission (EHRC) is the first time that data for Wales has been analysed to give a picture of inequalities in the country.

Report contributor Teresa Rees, professor at the School of Social Sciences, Cardiff University, said: “The results do not make comfortable reading. While some of the figures demonstrate we still shoulder the legacy of the decline of significant industries, others reveal more unexpected emerging groups experiencing poverty and inequality.”

The report suggests large numbers of people in Wales live in poverty, including almost half of single parents, 30% of childless, single women, a quarter of single men, 14% of male single pensioners and 18% of female single pensioners.

The average value of people in Wales’ savings and possessions is £205,000 – but 10% of people have £8,393 or less.

The report also shows large gaps in income between groups, with men earning a median hourly wage of £9.88 to £8.04 for women, though education has a big impact on earnings, with male graduates earning £15.40 and non-graduates £9.10 and women graduates £13.53 and non-graduates £7.33.

People living in white households have a median income of £289 a week compared to £218 in black households.

Kate Bennett, national director for Wales, EHRC, said: “We all know that feelings of being valued, respected and trusted are lower in societies with a big gap between the rich and poor.

“Unhappiness, crime and violence are often higher. Good relations between people in society can be seriously damaged.

“If we are to realise a strong and confident Wales for the future, poverty and disadvantage cannot be something that is handed down by parents to the next generation.”

Peter Black, Welsh Liberal Democrat AM for South Wales West, said: “These statistics paint a dire picture all across Wales and about the make up of our society.”

Education was seen as a key area to tackle to reduce inequalities by researchers and politicians, but it is also an area where the gaps between groups start to show themselves.

Pupils eligible for free school meals are 2.5 times less likely to get A* to C grades.

Men and women with disabilities are nearly three times more likely to have no qualifi- cations than non-disabled people, a possible factor in their 74% unemployment rate.

Opposition party AMs said they would be pushing for improvements in the Welsh education system.

Bethan Jenkins, Plaid Cymru AM for South Wales West, said: “The primary role of any government is to enable opportunity. Nowhere is this more true than in education, and nothing levels the playing field better than a good education.”

However, the report suggested employment was not a cure all to inequality.

Report author Rhys Davies, from Cardiff University’s school of social sciences, said: “While finding work is an important route to getting out of poverty, about 13% of people in working households are in poverty. The quality of employment in Wales is clustered in sectors that are relatively low paid.

“Inequality in Wales is lower than in other parts of the UK as a whole, that’s because we live in a relatively deprived part of the UK. We don’t have the headquarters of large multi-nationals that provide some of the best-paid jobs in the economy.

“That’s not necessarily a good thing because we’d like to have multi-nationals based in Cardiff.”

Welsh Labour’s Carl Sargeant said tackling economic inequality was a top priority.

The Assembly Government is also looking to reduce the number of workless families and improve the skills of low-income parents and the young.

A Welsh Conservative spokesperson said the new government needed to deliver on this critical issue, describing progress so far as unacceptable.

He said: “Twelve years of Labour-led governments have left Wales the poorest part of the UK, with significant gaps between rich and poor.”

“We need effective policies that boost enterprise and support business and jobs for all. As the official opposition in the Assembly, Welsh Conservatives will provide effective scrutiny and the strongest possible voice to make sure that happens.”

Shameful.

Yet the kitsch property in coastal towns across Wales are still being bought up by bankers for summer homes.

Sickening.

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True poverty is an absolute term rather than a relative term.

I doubt that half of Welsh single parents live in true poverty.

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True poverty is an absolute term rather than a relative term.

I doubt that half of Welsh single parents live in true poverty.

True poverty is when you cant afford beer and fags.....

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True poverty is when you cant afford beer and fags.....

Sorry, I missed that.

I thought that it was when you had to choose which of your two children to feed because you only had enough food to keep one of them alive.

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Sorry, I missed that.

I thought that it was when you had to choose which of your two children to feed because you only had enough food to keep one of them alive.

Surely poverty is more "stop sky sports or sky movies? Let's just downgrade back to sky+ instead of sky HD"

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Amazing that there can be so much poverty around when the average amount of wealth is 205000 pounds.

Im sure there are lots of people in Africa who could only dream of having the luxuries of these 'poverty stricken Welsh'. There are people who cannot even feed themselves and this good for nothing commision is whining about the 'plight' of people who have sky tv, ipads etc without even having to work for it.

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Amazing that there can be so much poverty around when the average amount of wealth is 205000 pounds.

Im sure there are lots of people in Africa who could only dream of having the luxuries of these 'poverty stricken Welsh'. There are people who cannot even feed themselves and this good for nothing commision is whining about the 'plight' of people who have sky tv, ipads etc without even having to work for it.

Agreed.

I spent my formative years in the Third World.

It really upsets me when people in the First World talk about poverty in relative terms as it makes a mockery of the absolute and abject poverty of so many people who were not fortunate enough to be born in the First World.

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When you think about it, if you are so poor, why not do something to get out of poverty, like move, get a job?

Being related to workshy lay-abouts, now re-categoried as 'poor', I know that the reason is that they like it that way.

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Did it really say that average savings in Wales was £205k?

Wealth and possessions its says, so more like a few grand in the bank and some wildly over-optimistic property valuations... and pot noodles.

Edited by cashinmattress

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This word poverty should never be mentioned to describe anybodys plight in this country as far as i am aware third world countries do not have an obesity epidemic.

Where as in poverty stricken Britain there is FREE healthcare FREE housing FREE schooling FREE money for the feckless and idle I bet the third world would love a bit U.K style poverty.

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This word poverty should never be mentioned to describe anybodys plight in this country as far as i am aware third world countries do not have an obesity epidemic.

Where as in poverty stricken Britain there is FREE healthcare FREE housing FREE schooling FREE money for the feckless and idle I bet the third world would love a bit U.K style poverty.

Why do you think they are queuing up at Sangatte?

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I knew some people down in Haverfordwest on council estates, very nice places compared to most social housing, some had cars thrown in because they were 'disabled'. I would estimate that they were on the equivalent of $30-40k salaries in terms of the spending money they had after essentials (rent/food/heating).

now THAT'S sickening. rational choices for them, by the way. just insane for the rest of society.

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WALES is a country where three-quarters of disabled people are out of work, half of single parents live in poverty and women earn 19% less than men

I really don't see a problem. In relative terms, I'm sure this is the way it's always been. Let it be.

In absolute terms, the disabled and single parents do very well from benefits, and women may earn less than men but they also have first dibs on marital property - pretty sure that's not chucked into the equation.

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WALES is a country where three-quarters of disabled people are out of work, half of single parents live in poverty and women earn 19% less than men

I really don't see a problem. In relative terms, I'm sure this is the way it's always been. Let it be.

In absolute terms, the disabled and single parents do very well from benefits, and women may earn less than men but they also have first dibs on marital property - pretty sure that's not chucked into the equation.

Right well you're paying for it.

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So what does wales actually do other than send me endless reminder letters about the various taxes I have to pay ?.

Sing, make love and corn dollies, oh and endlessly argue about the language.

Somehow, an influential group have taken over Wales and they wish to return it to a 15th Century, Welsh speaking idyll.

Even the Welsh Conservative party promises 1 million Welsh speakers by 2030.

Although the fanatics talk of independence, they know it would be the end for their particular dreams for Wales.

Without English money, the average person would see their living standard drop alarmingly.

The next step, as it was in Ireland, is that different people come to the fore, and all the old folk lore stuff is ditched as they try to emulate the more successful smaller nations.

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Shameful.

Yet the kitsch property in coastal towns across Wales are still being bought up by bankers for summer homes.

Sickening.

"Pupils eligible for free school meals are 2.5 times less likely to get A* to C grades."

Can any statistics geeks on here tell me what "2.5 times less" means? For example, what is 2.5 times less than 100?

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