Almost a quarter of older Londoners are living in poverty
Published on 12 October 2023 09:02 AM
Ahead of London Challenge Poverty Week (16-22 October), our network partner Age UK London has released its latest data that highlights the concerning rise in poverty among older people in London.
The 'Poverty amongst older Londoners' report findings show:
- almost a quarter (24%) of older Londoners are now living in poverty, which is higher than the rest of England, where the figure is currently 19%
- if poverty rates for over 50s in London were the same as the rest of England, some 125,000 fewer older Londoners would be in poverty
- the number of people living in poverty in London over the age of 50 has increased by 5% over the past decade almost half
- (46%) of older Londoners living in social housing are living in poverty
We believe this report highlights the urgent need for decision makers to address the financial struggles faced by older residents in the borough and across the capital and help take older Londoners out of poverty. The report also emphasises the impact that targeted interventions and support systems could have towards improving the quality of life for older people in London.
Mary Burd, our Chair at Age UK Camden, says: “This latest data is really concerning and underlines just how vital Age UK Camden’s services are in helping to support the borough’s older population.
“We continue to hear from hundreds of vulnerable older people who are already struggling to cope with soaring prices, depleted savings, and managing their energy bills, as we head into another challenging winter. Our Information & Advice team equip older people with the right information and support to help them manage their finances, look after their health and wellbeing during the cost of living crisis, heat their home and stay warm and access any welfare benefits and financial allowances they are entitled to. Having a place to turn to for extra help and support when it’s needed makes a huge difference to people’s lives.”
The report also highlights that poverty rates are consistently much higher for single pensioners and have been throughout the past decade. Almost a third, (30%) of single pensioners live in poverty, an increase of nearly 10 percentage points since 2013/14. By contrast, poverty rates for couples of state pension age are significantly lower at 18% and have fallen slightly.
The figures relating to older private renters are equally concerning with poverty rates at 28%. Despite this being a drop from a pre-pandemic peak of 34%, the number of older renters in poverty remains nearly two times the rate of their home-owning peers at 16%.
You can read the full report here.
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