Number of Scots in working poverty ‘at highest level since devolution’ : i NEWS

The number of Scots in working poverty has reached 610,000 (Photo: Getty)

The number of people in working poverty in Scotland has reached the highest level since devolution, according to official figures. Since the Scottish Parliament was created the number of people living in poverty in a household where at least one adult works has increased by 170,000.

In 1998/99 the total number of people living in working poverty stood at 440,000 – but by 2015/16 it had climbed to 610,000.

The proportion of people in poverty in working households has also increased. It stood at 39 per cent in 1998/99, rising to 43 per cent when the SNP took power in 2006/07 and is now at 58 per cent. In-work poverty refers to those living in households where at least one member of the household is working, either full or part-time, but where the household income is below the relative poverty threshold. The figures, which show in-work poverty levels after housing costs are taken into account, were published by the Scottish Government last month but have now been highlighted by Labour. ‘Moral issue’ “Increasing numbers of working poverty isn’t just a moral issue – it’s a reflection that our economy is not working as well as it should be,” said the party’s leader Kezia Dugdale. “Rather than looking to rerun a referendum campaign Scots don’t want, the SNP should be focused on building a Scottish economy that works for working-class families. “That means extending the living wage into more low-pay sectors and ensuring working families get the tax credits to which they are entitled.”

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