Posted in AS Sociology: Family, Uncategorized

AS Family: Single parents increasingly struggling with debt, says charity

New figures from StepChange Debt Charity show that despite positive economic news rapidly increasing numbers of people are seeking help for debt problems and that the growth in demand is sharpest among single parents and the under-25s.

An analysis of the charity’s clients by family composition shows that the growth in demand is highest among single parents. The number of single parents contacting the charity has risen from 30,383 in 2012 to 62,259, an increase of 105%.

Single parents now represent 18.3% of people contacting the charity; a comparison with national statistics shows that single parents are significantly overrepresented, just 10.6% of the adult population are single parents. Single parents are more likely than any other family type to have debts on high-cost forms of credit such as catalogues and home credit.

In 2013, one in five lone parents had lost £100 a month since benefit reforms were introduced in April 2013, according to a study by Gingerbread, the charity for lone parent families.

Nine out of 10 said they had been forced to cut back on spending on basics such as food and children’s clothes, with two-thirds skipping meals to ensure their children had enough to eat.

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