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CPAG publishes research on cost of bringing up children to 18

£143,000 will meet a child’s minimum needs

New research published by Child Poverty Action Group, and funded by the Joseph Rowntree Foundation, details the costs of meeting the minimum basic needs of a child in 2012.

The research has been released to coincide with publication of the Child Support Handbook 2012/13 which is available from CPAG. The Handbook contains details of the research findings.

Key findings from the research:

Chris Goulden, Head of Team (Poverty) at Joseph Rowntree Foundation (JRF), which funded the research study said:

"What this research shows, for the first time, is the cost of giving a child a minimum acceptable standard of living, from birth to age 18. Previous studies looking at this issue have been flawed because they are based on arbitrary judgements about what to include and use figures from what parents spend on their children, not what parents agree their children need to participate in society.

"One of the key findings from our research is the changing spending needs of families. For example, as the availability of public transport declines and its cost rises, the families who take part in the research say, for the first time, that a car is now essential. This brings additional financial burdens to parents – an issue that JRF highlighted this summer in our major Minimum Income Standards report.

"Speaking directly to groups of parents for this research, they were clear that not being able to afford to take part in school activities, go to birthday parties or have a modest annual family holiday will have serious consequences for the development of their children. That's an issue that both policy makers and politicians need to be mindful of as we continue to negotiate hard economic times."