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Child poverty

In Hackney 28% of children live in poverty according to the most recent official statistics. This means that 28% of children lived in families whose income was less than £13,728 a year or £264 a week, before housing costs had been deducted from their income. This is the fourth highest rate of child poverty in London.

Tackling child poverty

Our approach to tackling child poverty in Hackney is set out in our child poverty and family wellbeing plan 2016-18:

The plan builds on a plan first adopted in 2012 which takes a dual approach to child poverty, both aiming to maximise income and tackle complex needs. Having reviewed progress and needs last year, and spoken to children, young people and statutory and community services, this new plan maintains the priorities from 2012 but proposes a sharpening of focus in three areas:

  • parental employment
  • childcare
  • working with families with complex dependencies

The plan also identifies priority groups who are most at risk of living in poverty and urges all services to consider how they might focus on the needs of these groups when delivering actions to tackle child poverty.

Understanding the evidence – child poverty needs assessment

November 2015 update

In 2015 we completed a light touch review of the evidence base on child poverty in Hackney – this is the most recent look at the data and was key to underpinning the development of the Child Poverty and Family Wellbeing Action Plan.

2014 full child poverty needs assessment

The full child poverty needs assessment, which was completed in October 2014, provides a more detailed picture of child poverty in Hackney. It is intended as a tool to help inform the development of plans, including the child poverty strategy, policies, commissioning and services across the borough.

As part of the needs assessment we analysed evidence from a range of sources, including performance measures and national statistics, council service data and data from partners, eg Met police, public health/CCG, a review of literature: key policies, strategies and service plans and stakeholder engagement, including children young people and parents and the Hackney community and voluntary sector.


Chapters 1-4 look at the risk factors in relation to child poverty in Hackney. Chapters 5-8 examine drivers and impacts of poverty. Chapter 9 summarises the risk factors, drivers and impacts in terms of ethnicity.


The needs assessment identified the importance of:

  • the need to continue early identification and intervention, especially in the early years to improve educational attainment and other outcomes.
  • the need for a targeted approach on those families that are more at risk of poverty and the associated poor outcomes. These are:
    • workless households
    • lone parent families with young children
    • benefit claimant households affected by welfare reform
    • black and minority ethnic groups
    • disabled children and parents
    • new arrivals/ emerging communities
  • the need for a whole family approach
  • the need to maximise opportunities to target support early and at the points in children’s lives when it can have most impact
  • the need to continue and strengthen partnership working
  • the need to enable families to maximise their household income

Parents and employment

Under this last principle a separate but parallel piece of work has been undertaken to identify the issues and barriers to parents accessing employment opportunities. The report is a supplement to the needs assessment (it bridges the child poverty needs assessment and local economic assessment) and makes a number of recommendations under three broad headings:

  • childcare
  • pre-employment support
  • using our influence to promote the value of a diverse and flexible workforce

The recommendations are being taken forward as part of the child poverty and family wellbeing plan refresh.

Page updated on: 11 July 2019