Around 10 percent of children in Leeuwarden are at risk of poverty, whilst 14 percent of families in Groningen are ‘low-income’
Translated by Thomas Ansell
According to both the Omrop Fryslân, and the Leeuwarder Courant, the province of Friesland is suffering from a long-term poverty problem. This has been revealed by the Central Bureau for Statistics, who looked into the various incomes of families with children across the Netherlands.
It was found that in many circumstances and families, much of the income came from benefit payments. In Leeuwarden, the chances of poverty are eight percent higher than the national average.
In the Frisian municipalities of Smallingerland, Harlingen, Noardeast-Fryslân; Acktkarspelen, and the Weststellingwerf the chances of children growing up in poverty sits around the national average, whilst some other Frisian municipalities have lower figures.
The national average for low-income families is 7.9 percent, however in Friesland as a whole this rises to 8.2 percent. In concrete terms, this means that around 22,900 Frisian families have lived with low income for at least a year.
For a one-parent family with two children, ‘low income’ means having an income of less than 1,600 Euros per month. For a two-parent, two-child family, the level is 2,000 Euros per month. Around 9,400 children in Friesland live in families with incomes lower than these levels.
Keimpe Anema, a researcher at the Fries Sociaal Planbuereau (FSP) said that poverty in the Netherlands is multi-faceted: “poverty includes a number of so-called structural components, such as poverty that is passed between generations. We often see that if parents live in poverty, their children have a similar fate.”
There are massive geographical disparities across the Netherlands. Rotterdam has, in relative terms, the most residents with a low income- at 14.5 percent. Groningen comes in second place, with 14 percent of households having low income. Following come Arnhem and Amsterdam (both at 13.7 percent). The area with the fewest low-income households is Rozendaal in Gelderland (1.6 percent).