CHILDREN: CHALLENGE POVERTY WEEK MUST BE A CALL TO ACTION, SAYS JACKIE BAILLIE

Dumbarton from the air. Picture by Sean Davenport, Myre Media

By Bill Heaney

Jackie Baillie, MSP for Dumbarton Constituency, has said that this year’s Challenge Poverty Week must be a “call to action” for the SNP  government, as the cost of living crisis starts to hit home.

Challenge Poverty Week 2021 was held last week in the midst of a growing cost of living crisis, as the energy price cap rises, furlough is brought to an end and the Universal Credit uplift is scrapped.

A new report by the Joseph Rowntree Foundation has warned that the Scottish Government is set to miss their interim Child Poverty targets by at least 4 percentage points, leaving up to 210,000 children in poverty.

Jackie Baillie, left,  has said that the SNP must deliver “action to match their rhetoric” when it comes to tackling poverty Scotland.

She said: “Our growing poverty rates are Scotland’s shame.   The cost of living crisis is hitting home and we are nowhere near reaching our child poverty reduction targets. It would be a national scandal if we failed to meet the child poverty targets we set ourselves just four years ago.

“This year’s Challenge Poverty Week must be more than a photo-op for Scottish Ministers. This needs to be a call to action to deliver the change we so desperately need.

“Scottish Labour has set out ambitious and credible plans to tackle our disgracefully high rates of child poverty and to try and make sure no-one faces a choice between heating and eating this winter.

“The First Minister’s warm words won’t heat homes this winter. We have the powers to do something to protect people from the impending cost of living crisis – all that is missing is the political will to do so.”

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