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Child poverty

CHILD POVERTY

Children depend on the resources of their family, whānau and wider community for having their basic material needs met.  This indicator looks at how the Government is progressing towards its child poverty and hardship targets. 

The experience of poverty can involve various forms of hardship, such as going hungry, living in cold, damp houses and foregoing opportunities, like school outings and sports activities.

There is strong evidence that growing up in poverty can harm children in multiple ways. These effects are particularly evident when poverty is severe and persistent, and when it occurs during early childhood. The harmful effects of child poverty can continue into adulthood, impacting individuals' future wellbeing and potential, and the economy and society more generally.

The Child Poverty Reduction Act 2018 requires the government to set long-term (10-year) and intermediate (3-year) targets on a defined set of child poverty measures. 

This indicator relates to the 'have what they need' outcome.

How will this be measured?

  • The Child Poverty Reduction Act 2018 established a suite of measures to measure and report on child poverty. There are currently three measures of child poverty and hardship for which the Government must set targets:
    • BHC 50 moving line - Proportion of children living in households with an equivalised disposable household income (before housing costs) that isbelow 50% of median income of that financial year
    • AHC 50 fixed line - Proportion of children living in households with an equivalised disposable household income (after housing costs) that isbelow 50% of median income of the 2017/18 financial year
    • Material hardship - Proportion of children living in households who scored 6 or below on the dep-17 material hardship index.
  • In May 2018, the Government formally adopted its targets for the three primary measures for which data is available. These are:
  • This indicator will be updated annually in March.

For more information

Last updated: 
Thursday, 23 July 2020