Research says UK families with disabled children more likely to live in poverty

April 22, 2010

Disabled children in the UK are more likely to likely to live with low-income, deprivation, debt and poor housing. University of Warwick researchers writing in the journal BMC Pediatrics found that families with disabled children experience higher levels of poverty and personal and social disadvantage than other children.

Dr Clare Blackburn worked with a team of researchers from the University of Warwick to study data from the 2004/5 national Family Resources Survey (FRS). She said, “The FRS has data on 16,012 children aged 0-18 years. We found that 7.3% of these were reported as being disabled, almost two percentage points (250,000 children) more than published estimates for 2003-4. The highest prevalence of childhood disability was found among those with the poorest income”.

The results of this study clearly show that in the UK today continue to experience and material and social disadvantage. Speaking about the reasons for this, Dr Blackburn from the University of Warwick said:

“Households with disabled children have caring responsibilities that makes them far less able to seek employment and far less able to have any career progression for those who are able to also to take up job. With this reduced ability to earn an income comes the significant additional financial costs associated with caring for a disabled child. Given the relationship between positive health, social and education outcomes and and material deprivation, improving the circumstances of disabled children is likely to be crucial”.

Explore further: Washington state has fourth lowest child poverty rate in U.S.

More information: The journal article can be found here:

Related Stories

Recommended for you

Biologists trace how human innovation impacts tool evolution

November 24, 2015

Many animals exhibit learned behaviors, but humans are unique in their capacity to build on existing knowledge to make new innovations. Understanding the patterns of how new generations of tools emerged in prehistoric societies, ...


Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.