Families trapped in spiral of poverty

An MP has called on the Government to do more to encourage people on low incomes to save money and manage their money better after the EDP reported how more than one in 10 East Anglian families has gone sick or hungry because they could not afford food and medicine.

An MP has called on the government to do more to encourage people on low incomes to save money and manage their money better after the EDP reported how more than one in 10 East Anglian families has gone sick or hungry because they could not afford food and medicine.

South West Norfolk MP Christopher Fraser raised the issue in the Commons and said he was shocked to learn of the statistics which also reveal that nearly the same number of families have risked eviction after being too poor to pay rent.

The research from children's charity NCH and Barclays has prompted calls for more to be done to help families trapped in the spiral of poverty.

The survey of more than 1,000 adults in the Eastern region also found that roughly half of people who earn less than £15,000 a year understand basic financial terminology such as APR or annual percentage rate compared to 82pc of those with a £45,000-plus salary. Such poor financial knowledge can have a "devastating" impact on already struggling households, the report indicated.

Mr Fraser said: "Poverty amongst low income families is a far bigger problem than most people suspected.

"I was shocked to learn that people on the lowest incomes are six times more likely to have gone without food at some point than those on higher incomes.

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"A lack of financial knowledge can be extremely damaging for a family who is already struggling with money."

The survey revealed that people on the lowest incomes are four times more likely to have gone without medicine than those on higher incomes.