Income and Poverty

Monitoring Poverty and Social Exclusion in Scotland 2005

  • Published 5th Dec 2005
  • Authors: Guy Palmer, , Jane Carr, , Peter Kenway,
  • Category: Income and Poverty

In 2004, NPI reported on poverty and social exclusion in Scotland. This Findings updates that analysis with the latest data. Overall levels of income poverty continue to fall, particularly among pensioners and children. But almost a million people in Scotland still live in income poverty and beneath the overall progress there are some particular areas of concern:

  • The number of working-age adults without dependent children who are in income poverty has increased from around 300,000 in the mid-1990s to almost 400,000 in recent years.
  • A third of all working-age disabled adults in Scotland are in income poverty, double the rate for their non-disabled counterparts.
  • Almost half of all lone parents in Scotland are in income poverty, three times the rate for couples with children.
  • There are 200,000 people of working age who want work but who are not officially unemployed; many are disabled people or lone parents. This figure has declined by only a small amount over the last decade.
  • While work strongly reduces the risk of being in poverty, it does not eliminate it: two-fifths of the people in working-age households who are in income poverty now have someone in their household in paid work.
  • A third of all employees in Scotland earn less than £6.50 per hour. Half of all part-time workers earn less than £6.50 per hour, most of them women.
  • The risk of low pay is much greater for those with poor or no educational qualifications: for people aged 25 to 50, almost half of all those who are in work but lack a Higher grade or above earn less than £6.50 per hour.
  • Scotland's health is worse than either the rest of Great Britain or Europe on a range of indicators, from premature deaths to dental health among children. Within this, there are also substantial inequalities between different parts of Scotland and between different groups within the population.

About this report
This report was funded by the Joseph Rowntree Foundation and written by Guy Palmer, Jane Carr, and Peter Kenway. The facts presented and views expressed in this report are those of the authors and not necessarily those of the Foundation