Thousands of children across Dorset trapped in "toxic cycle of debt", says charity

Thousands of children across Dorset trapped in

Thousands of children across Dorset trapped in "toxic cycle of debt", says charity

First published in News

MORE needs to be done to help the thousands of children across Dorset living in families trapped in the “toxic cycle of debt”.

That is the message from national charities the Children Society and StepChange Debt, which say more than 18,000 children across the county come from households facing financial struggles.

Research, carried out by the charities, show more than 5,700 children in Bournemouth, 2,500 children in Poole and more than 1,620 children in Christchurch come from debt-troubled homes.

The numbers suggest families across the county owe a combined total of more than £51million.

As part of the Debt Trap Campaign, the charities are calling on the government to introduce a “breathing space” scheme to give parents an extended period of protection from additional charges, further interest and enforcement action.

The campaign also calls for tighter restrictions on advertising loans to children and more support and advice for families in financial difficulty.

Mike O'Connor, chief executive of StepChange Debt Charity, said: “As parents become trapped in a toxic cycle of debt, children can become the unwitting victims. This is not acceptable in a society that aspires to justice and fairness.

“We need concerted action to ensure financially vulnerable families are given 'breathing space' to help them get back on their feet and protect both children and families from the most harmful effects of debt.”

Matthew Reed, chief executive of the Children's Society, said: “This research exposes the shocking reality of parents lying awake at night worrying and unhappy children going without. Many families are feeling the squeeze and parents struggling on low wages are battling just to pay the bills.”

Eren Bailey, centre manager of Christians Against Poverty in Bournemouth, said the organisation had been inundated with people asking for help since it launched last year.

“We only have capacity to see three people a day and at the moment we have a waiting list through to November,” she said.

“We’ve had more than 120 people come to us asking for help but we have had to turn some of them away because we can only see people in our area.”

Ms Bailey said people can end up in debt for a variety of reasons including illness, mental health problems, job losses and relationship breakdowns.

Throwing her support behind the Debt Trap Campaign, she added: “If people have had to go into their overdrafts or not been able to pay a bank loan, the bank charges them a lot of money.

“It then makes it impossible to get to a situation where they can pay it back.”

To speak to an advisor from the charity, which also has branches in the New Forest and Poole, call 0800 328 0006.

Comments (8)

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10:10am Thu 14 Aug 14

suzigirl says...

Don't blame the cyclists!
Don't blame the cyclists! suzigirl
  • Score: -1

10:33am Thu 14 Aug 14

speedy231278 says...

Perhaps people ought to consider whether or not they can afford to breed before popping out several sprogs and wondering where all their money went? Having kids and then claiming a small fortune in benefits and credits to support them is completely irresponsible and selfish. I wonder what the local council would do if I applied for some sort of allowance if I went and signed up an HP agreement to buy a nice new bike that I couldn't afford the payments on?
Perhaps people ought to consider whether or not they can afford to breed before popping out several sprogs and wondering where all their money went? Having kids and then claiming a small fortune in benefits and credits to support them is completely irresponsible and selfish. I wonder what the local council would do if I applied for some sort of allowance if I went and signed up an HP agreement to buy a nice new bike that I couldn't afford the payments on? speedy231278
  • Score: 0

10:38am Thu 14 Aug 14

misplacedspaniard says...

speedy231278 wrote:
Perhaps people ought to consider whether or not they can afford to breed before popping out several sprogs and wondering where all their money went? Having kids and then claiming a small fortune in benefits and credits to support them is completely irresponsible and selfish. I wonder what the local council would do if I applied for some sort of allowance if I went and signed up an HP agreement to buy a nice new bike that I couldn't afford the payments on?
A lot if these lorn sharks and banks are to blame. Put that together with wages not relative to the cost of living and you have a recipe for disaster.
[quote][p][bold]speedy231278[/bold] wrote: Perhaps people ought to consider whether or not they can afford to breed before popping out several sprogs and wondering where all their money went? Having kids and then claiming a small fortune in benefits and credits to support them is completely irresponsible and selfish. I wonder what the local council would do if I applied for some sort of allowance if I went and signed up an HP agreement to buy a nice new bike that I couldn't afford the payments on?[/p][/quote]A lot if these lorn sharks and banks are to blame. Put that together with wages not relative to the cost of living and you have a recipe for disaster. misplacedspaniard
  • Score: 3

10:47am Thu 14 Aug 14

muscliffman says...

The kid's may be caught in debt but it's adults who are entirely responsible for that situation. If people cannot afford to have children just stop breeding them and don't plead with the rest of us to constantly bail you out.

It's high time all UK tax credits and benefit payments were stopped after child number two for couples and child number one for single parents - this might begin to solve a lot of our societies problems in the longer term!
The kid's may be caught in debt but it's adults who are entirely responsible for that situation. If people cannot afford to have children just stop breeding them and don't plead with the rest of us to constantly bail you out. It's high time all UK tax credits and benefit payments were stopped after child number two for couples and child number one for single parents - this might begin to solve a lot of our societies problems in the longer term! muscliffman
  • Score: -6

10:52am Thu 14 Aug 14

elite50 says...

Being one of the war-time kids who was raised to believe that the "fags and beer" came before proper meals or decent clothing I have to tell you that these modern kids are learning a lesson that no charity can teach them.
They have two choices "survive or take the same path".
Most of them will refuse to make the same mistakes that their parents did.
An intervention by well meaning "do gooders" will only encourage the kids to hold their hands out in later life.
Being one of the war-time kids who was raised to believe that the "fags and beer" came before proper meals or decent clothing I have to tell you that these modern kids are learning a lesson that no charity can teach them. They have two choices "survive or take the same path". Most of them will refuse to make the same mistakes that their parents did. An intervention by well meaning "do gooders" will only encourage the kids to hold their hands out in later life. elite50
  • Score: 7

11:01am Thu 14 Aug 14

penhalereturns says...

muscliffman wrote:
The kid's may be caught in debt but it's adults who are entirely responsible for that situation. If people cannot afford to have children just stop breeding them and don't plead with the rest of us to constantly bail you out.

It's high time all UK tax credits and benefit payments were stopped after child number two for couples and child number one for single parents - this might begin to solve a lot of our societies problems in the longer term!
Quite right to, to many people pop out kids they cant afford and then claim child benefit, family tax credit and child tax credit from my taxes and then have the nerve to expect me to pay for them to stick their kids into childcare, loan sharks are not the problem, its the irresponsible people having kids without the means to support them that's the problem.
[quote][p][bold]muscliffman[/bold] wrote: The kid's may be caught in debt but it's adults who are entirely responsible for that situation. If people cannot afford to have children just stop breeding them and don't plead with the rest of us to constantly bail you out. It's high time all UK tax credits and benefit payments were stopped after child number two for couples and child number one for single parents - this might begin to solve a lot of our societies problems in the longer term![/p][/quote]Quite right to, to many people pop out kids they cant afford and then claim child benefit, family tax credit and child tax credit from my taxes and then have the nerve to expect me to pay for them to stick their kids into childcare, loan sharks are not the problem, its the irresponsible people having kids without the means to support them that's the problem. penhalereturns
  • Score: 0

1:00pm Thu 14 Aug 14

penhalereturns says...

penhalereturns wrote:
muscliffman wrote:
The kid's may be caught in debt but it's adults who are entirely responsible for that situation. If people cannot afford to have children just stop breeding them and don't plead with the rest of us to constantly bail you out.

It's high time all UK tax credits and benefit payments were stopped after child number two for couples and child number one for single parents - this might begin to solve a lot of our societies problems in the longer term!
Quite right to, to many people pop out kids they cant afford and then claim child benefit, family tax credit and child tax credit from my taxes and then have the nerve to expect me to pay for them to stick their kids into childcare, loan sharks are not the problem, its the irresponsible people having kids without the means to support them that's the problem.
All the thumbs down for my comment, seems as though all the benefit brigade on on here this morning especially those who bang out a kid every five minutes and expect me to pay for them via the taxes I pay after a hard days work, will benefit street ever be filmed in Dorset I wonder.
[quote][p][bold]penhalereturns[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]muscliffman[/bold] wrote: The kid's may be caught in debt but it's adults who are entirely responsible for that situation. If people cannot afford to have children just stop breeding them and don't plead with the rest of us to constantly bail you out. It's high time all UK tax credits and benefit payments were stopped after child number two for couples and child number one for single parents - this might begin to solve a lot of our societies problems in the longer term![/p][/quote]Quite right to, to many people pop out kids they cant afford and then claim child benefit, family tax credit and child tax credit from my taxes and then have the nerve to expect me to pay for them to stick their kids into childcare, loan sharks are not the problem, its the irresponsible people having kids without the means to support them that's the problem.[/p][/quote]All the thumbs down for my comment, seems as though all the benefit brigade on on here this morning especially those who bang out a kid every five minutes and expect me to pay for them via the taxes I pay after a hard days work, will benefit street ever be filmed in Dorset I wonder. penhalereturns
  • Score: 2

2:14pm Thu 14 Aug 14

BoscVegas says...

anyone else being advertised a loan from Nationwide for 6.2% APR whilst they read this? nice one Echo.
anyone else being advertised a loan from Nationwide for 6.2% APR whilst they read this? nice one Echo. BoscVegas
  • Score: 2

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