Almost half of the Romanian children (49.2%) were exposed to the risk of poverty and social exclusion last year, the highest percentage among the EU member states, and almost double compared to the European average of 26.4%, according to the latest Eurostat survey.
In 2016, almost half of the children were at risk of poverty or social exclusion in Romania (49.2%) and Bulgaria (45.6%). They were followed by Greece (37.5%), Hungary (33.6%), Spain (32.9%), Italy (32.8%) and Lithuania (32.4%).
At the opposite side, the lowest shares of children at risk of poverty or social exclusion were recorded in Denmark (13.8%), Finland (14.7%) and Slovenia (14.9%), ahead of the Czech Republic (17.4%) and the Netherlands (17.6%).
In 2016, 24.8 million children in the European Union (EU), or 26.4% of the population aged 0 to 17, were at risk of poverty or social exclusion. This means that the children were living in households with at least one of the following three conditions: at risk of poverty after social transfers (income poverty), severely materially deprived or with very low work intensity.
The proportion of children at risk of poverty or social exclusion in the EU has slightly decreased over the years, from 27.5% in 2010 to 26.4% in 2016.
Yet, in Romania, the proportion has increased from 48.1% in 2010 up to 49.2% in 2016.
The Eurostat survey has been released on the Universal Children’s Day celebrated on 20 November.
President Iohannis: Every child is a hope for a better future
President Klaus Iohannis also released a message on Universal Children’s Day saying that every child is a hope for a better future. His message was delivered at the opening of an exhibition in Bucharest called “(You only understand it) from inside.”
According to the Romanian head of state, neglect, abuse, and violence of any kind against children are proofs of a primitive mentality. “Every child is a hope for a better future. It is our duty to make sure that everyone has equal opportunities and adequate support, so that today’s children may become adults who are responsible and involved in the day of tomorrosw. Neglect, abuse, and violence of any kind against children are the proofs of a primitive mentality, of a society that refuses to protect its most precious assets. Observing November 20 reminds all of us, once again, how important it is to protect the future and to give children the opportunity to fulfill their potential, without hindering their development.”