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Leaders from Tower Hamlets and Newham sign open letter after latest child poverty figures

PUBLISHED: 16:59 12 March 2013 | UPDATED: 16:59 12 March 2013

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The government has been accused by leading politicians from four London boroughs of failing to do enough to tackle child poverty.

In an open letter, Labour leaders from Tower Hamlets, Newham, Hackney and Barking and Dagenham said the government’s “misguided policies” were to blame for continued high levels of poverty.

“Their economic mismanagement has left many boroughs with significantly higher levels of unemployment”, read the letter, which was signed by Tower Hamlets Labour group leader Cllr Joshua Peck and Newham Mayor Sir Robin Wales.

“Whilst child poverty has decreased in each of our boroughs since the last set of statistics was released, we now see clear signs that it is increasing again, in large part as a result of the government’s misguided policies.”

The Campaign to End Child Poverty published research last month showing child poverty in Tower Hamlets remains higher than anywhere else in the UK – with 42 per cent of children living below the poverty line. In Newham, 32 per cent of children are in poverty.

The letter concludes: “Child poverty is a manmade and preventable tragedy - one which we should all be working to reduce and eradicate. [The] figures are a stark reminder that this country is failing in that task.”

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