PES Social Europe Network demands action to end child poverty now

18/10/2018

Members of the PES Social Europe Network

The creation of a European Labour Authority, a debate on social priorities for the next Multiannual Financial Framework – the EU’s long-term draft budget – and discussions about the European Unemployment Insurance Scheme and decent work in the digital economy, were all on the agenda of today’s PES Social Europe Network meeting in Brussels.

At the meeting the Network also expressed strong support for proposals for a European Child Guarantee to fight child poverty.

More than one in four children throughout the European Union are at risk of living in poverty or experiencing social exclusion. The Party of European Socialists and its partners from the civil society want to use the upcoming EU elections to push for the EU and national authorities to take action to end child poverty - one of the biggest injustices and root causes of inequalities in our societies.

Pervenche Berès, chair of the PES Social Europe Network, said:

“As socialists we are determined to put social matters at the top of the European agenda. We have managed to initiate several very important files that must become a reality without delay. Austerity has put our societies under pressure and one of the most shocking effects of this is child poverty. This is a reality that no one should ignore

“Children today are at a greater risk of poverty or social exclusion than the overall population in a large majority of EU countries. Poverty has become an intergenerational problem – it is being carried over from one generation to the next. As a society, we cannot afford to waste this potential. All children deserve to have a fair chance.

“With the Child Guarantee we want to take on the status quo and achieve real social change. We want to ensure basic and decent living conditions for all children in the European Union. That’s why we want to guarantee good education to every child in the European Union so they are able to fully develop, learn and achieve their potential. This is why we want all children to receive a meal at school or kindergarten, so they can concentrate on their lessons rather than their stomachs. This is why we want all children to have access to healthcare and to have proper accommodation, so they have healthy and dignified lives.”