Family impact of debt revealed

New research published by The Children's Society in collaboration with StepChange Debt Charity has revealed the extent to which young people up an…

New research published by The Children's Society in collaboration with StepChange Debt Charity has revealed the extent to which young people up and down the country are being affected by the large debts of their parents.

The report is entitled 'The Debt Trap: Exposing the impact of problem debt on children' and argued there are currently around two and a half million young people in the UK living in families facing problem debts.

Overall, these families are behind by a cumulative £4.8 billion on household bills and loans, and these financial burdens are causing considerable stresses and hardships for children.

Chief executive of The Children's Society Matthew Reed commented: "With little savings to fall back on, it can take just one unexpected setback – like illness or being made redundant – to tip a family over the edge and into a debt trap that can feel impossible to escape from.

"This research exposes the shocking reality of parents lying awake at night worrying and unhappy children going without."

According to the report's findings, children in families facing ongoing problem debt worries are more than twice as likely to be bullied as a result of not being able to afford the same toys, clothes or latest gadgets.

In addition, more than half (58 per cent) in families with debt issues stated they regularly worry about their family's financial situation.

For just under half (47 per cent) of respondents, debt problems have been shown to cause arguments at home, while nine out of ten families facing problem debt issues have stated they have at some point had to go without essential items, like food, clothes or heating, in order to keep up with repayments on their borrowings.

It is therefore imperative that outside support and informed debt advice is sought by households facing these ongoing financial issues, as often people can get caught in a vicious cycle of debt that can be hard to break out of.

Posted by Amy White

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