REQUIRED action to tackle child poverty in East Renfrewshire has been set out in a new report.

More affordable housing, extra help for working parents and an increase in local employers paying the Living Wage are included.

East Renfrewshire has some of the lowest levels of child poverty in Scotland but there are around 3,600 children living in low income families.

“We want all children in East Renfrewshire to experience a stable and secure childhood and succeed,” the report states.

“In order to do this, we need to both tackle the root causes of poverty and reduce the impact of poverty.”

Cabinet members are recommended to approve the publication of the area’s second child poverty action report when they meet next week.

Publishing a report is a duty under the Child Poverty (Scotland) Act 2017, which aims to significantly reduce child poverty in Scotland by 2030.

It has been worked on by council and health board staff and had been planned for publication in June but was delayed due to Covid-19.

The pandemic could also have an impact on the proposed work to reduce poverty.

“We recognise there will be challenging times ahead and Covid-19 is likely to have an impact on the profile of poverty, including child poverty, in the future,” the report states.

“Poverty should be considered within all Covid-19 recovery and renewal planning.”

Feedback from people with ‘lived experience’ found a number of different barriers to employment, including a lack of appropriate childcare and the loss of benefit entitlement.

“Some noted that increasing their earnings from employment could result in them being financially worse off as they could lose their entitlement to certain benefits, including free school meals and school uniform grants,” the report adds.