Tomorrow’s release of child poverty figures are expected to see an increase in relative poverty. Whilst this may be disappointing, it is important to remember that the relative poverty measure is more a measure of inequality than poverty. To get a real measure of poverty we need to look more at absolute poverty and actual incomes.
The measure of relative poverty (children living in households with income less than 60% of the median income) seems to have fallen during the recession but will (likely) be rising during the recovery. This does seem to be wrong way round. Trying to measure by comparison to median incomes alone is insufficient.
Aside from general macro indicators (strong economic growth, record high employment rates, recovering real wages etc) which are all improving, there is some evidence that situation has improved. The numbers of children living in workless households has fallen from around 1.9 million in 2010 to nearer 1.5 million at the end of 2014. The number of children living in households where nobody has ever worked has fallen from approximately 300,000 to 230,000 over the same period. This is still too high but there has clearly been some progress.