Child Guarantee initiative of the European Commission

The European Commission has launched a consultation on the European Child Guarantee proposal, an initiative to fight child poverty in Europe. NOE formulated key messages to tackle child poverty and suggested to include CHILDREN RAISED IN LARGE FAMILIES among other groups of children who should benefit from the scheme.

The Child Guarantee is meant to ensure that all children in Europe who are at risk of poverty, social exclusion, or are otherwise disadvantaged, have access to essential services of good quality.

It will recommend that EU countries invest in and develop strategies and action plans to ensure that children in need have access to free or affordable services such as:

  • education, including early childhood education & care
  • healthcare, nutrition & housing
  • culture & leisure activities

A feedback period was opened by European Commission until 7th. October 2020. Feedback will be taken into account for further development and fine tuning of the initiative. The Commission will summarise the input received in a synopsis report explaining how the input will be taken on board and, if applicable, why certain suggestions can’t be taken up.

The feedback sent by NOE

As a member organization of ELFAC, the European Large Families Confederation, NOE fully agreed with the organization’s statement that the best way to combat poverty is to prevent it and therefore the Child Guarantee should not only have care and repair functions.

NOE also shares ELFAC’s view on the well-being of children being dependent on that of their family. We therefore ask the European Commission to follow an integrative approach on child poverty, recalling that CHILD POVERTY IS first and foremost a MATTER OF FAMILY POVERTY. Investing in families is the most efficient way to help vulnerable children as all families become more vulnerable when they have children, even more in the current context of pandemic and economic crisis.

After reading the feasibility study for a Child Guarantee, NOE strongly suggested to include among other groups of children who should benefit from the scheme CHILDREN RAISED IN LARGE FAMILIES. As a justification NOE highlighted, that according to Eurostat figures (2017), examining the household types, the risk of poverty or social exclusion is growing with the number of children in the household. Share of large families’ households living at risk of poverty or social exclusion was 30,9% within the population in 2017, the second largest after single parent households. Although the situation of households with 3 or more children in Hungary is better than the EU average, NOE still thinks that children of large families are an important target group. We can support our statement in relation to all 4 areas of planned intervention, as large families have to face a disproportional burden when trying to provide the same level of education and health care, a balanced diet and adequate housing condition for all their children. Taking the demographic trends of the EU also into consideration, the Child Guarantee should also ensure that raising children does not mean a risk of poverty.