Children who experience poverty are more than three times as likely to be poor when they are adults, according to new research exploring socioeconomic disadvantage in Australia. Source: Pro Bono News.
The Melbourne University report uses data from the Household, Income and Labour Dynamics in Australia (HILDA) survey, following 1,300 children aged nine to 15 in 2001 from childhood into adulthood in 2018.
Researchers found that adults who experienced childhood poverty were 3.3 times more likely be poor, 2.5 times more likely to live in social housing, and 2.5 times more likely to experience financial stress than young adults who never experienced poverty.
Conversely, young adults who grew up poverty-free were found to have 23 per cent higher hourly wages, and were 2.4 times more likely to get university degrees, 1.8 times more likely to work full-time, and 1.3 times more likely to hold permanent jobs.
The report is part of a new multi-year project exploring solutions to cycles of poverty from the University of Melbourne in partnership with the Paul Ramsay Foundation.
It will entail a series of studies to better understand the extent, nature and causes of socioeconomic disadvantage in Australia.
Poverty was defined as households that earn less than half the national median income – around $24,000 in 2018.
The report found even small periods of childhood poverty had an adverse effect on young people entering adulthood.
Childhood poverty trapping kids in cycles of disadvantage (by Luke Michael, Pro Bono News)