A LEADING children’s charity is calling on the Government to take action after new figures revealed 3,000 youngsters in Hartlepool are living in severe poverty.
Research published by Save the Children show that 17 per cent of the town’s children are living in the deepest poverty.
In County Durham 15 per cent of children live in poverty, which accounts for 13,000 youngsters, and is higher than the national average of 13 per cent.
With rising unemployment and welfare cuts, the charity fears that even more children will be forced into severe poverty.
Sally Copley, from Save the Children, said: “Children up and down the country are going to sleep at night in homes with no heating, without eating a proper meal and without proper school uniforms to put on in the morning. No child should be born without a chance.
“It is a national scandal that 1.6 million children are growing up in severe poverty.”
The charity is calling on Chancellor George Osborne to draw up an emergency plan in the next budget to channel new jobs into the poorest areas and paying more childcare costs to low income families so parents can go out to work.
Manchester has the highest proportion of children in the UK living in severe poverty with 27 per cent.