Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Bethanie and her friends enjoyed being treated like film stars when they arrived at their primary school prom in a pink stretch limousine (see yesterday's blog) but the same can't be said for many children living in Hull. The local economy is dominated by low wages and high unemployment. Almost half of the people in Hull live in electoral wards that are amongst the 105 most deprived wards in the country, according to Hull City Council's website.

Newsround covered poverty problems in the award-winning programme called The Wrong Trainers, which went out in December 2006. However, as with Ofcom's discussion paper on the future of children's TV (see blog 11 February 2008), for some reason Newsround chose not to cover the joint UK children's commissioners' report(pdf) to the UN Committee on the Rights of the Child.

Speaking live to BBC News on the morning of 9 June 2008, Patricia Lewsley, the Northern Ireland children's commissioner said the commissioners' most striking finding across all their four jurisdictions concerned poverty in its widest sense, including poverty of opportunity for young people. She said kids living in poverty "can't ask their parents for £10 for art materials because that could mean two days without food or a day and a half without electricity."

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