Copenhagen close to ushering in poverty limit for children

Report shows that 5.5 percent of children in Copenhagen are considered poor, well above the national average

Back in 2013, the government at the time established a poverty limit for the whole of Denmark – a move that was quickly scrapped again by the following Venstre-led government.

Now, Copenhagen seeks to tread a similar path, with local politicians at City Hall voting to establish a poverty limit with a particular focus on children.

“We must oblige all administrations and the Citizens’ Representative Office to consider child poverty when making all decisions. No child should live in poverty in Copenhagen,” said Karina Vestergård Madsen, the city’s mayor for social issues, who is the individual behind the poverty limit proposal.

More specifically, City Hall will develop a poverty limit model based on a budget method that incorporates a median income method.

The model is tasked with being completed before the 2024 Budget negotiations are set to commence.

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Inspiration for Parliament
Madsen said she hopes the government would be inspired by Copenhagen’s initiative and consider a national poverty limit again.

“Poverty doesn’t end at Copenhagen’s municipal border – there should be a national limit. It is Christiansborg that can prevent poverty,” said Madsen.

In 2020, the city centre had the highest disposable income in the municipality, while Bispebjerg had the lowest.

And a recent report from AE showed that 5.5 percent of children were considered poor in Copenhagen – well above the national average of 4.7 percent.