IT is depressing that in the Calton and Springburn one in two weans is mired in child poverty.
In the rest of Glasgow it's one in three.
Child poverty is defined as living in a household where the money coming in is less than 60% of UK median earnings of £25,000. There is a simple solution to child poverty. It's called reasonably-paid employment for the parents. Don't expect this Government, or any, to implement such a policy any time soon.
I remember when my family had to live on very little money. Scraping together pennies at the end of the week to buy a loaf. No butter. Just Echo, the margarine that could in no way be confused even with Stork. Echo, the stuff that was also used to remove tar from your legs. But enough of my hard times, which were brief and not very hard at all.
In the absence of an immediate end to child poverty, I suggest a manifesto of children's rights regardless of family income:
n At least one parent who is not permanently drunk or off their face with drugs. Failing this, access to a safe foster home.
n A bowl of porridge before school. Or, a preferred option these days, a visit to the breakfast club.
n A pair of shoes that don't leak.
n A bath once a week whether you need one or not.
n Regular servings of macaroni and cheese with a crispy top and hot buttered toast. Mince and tatties for carnivores.
n No money for biscuits but you help mum bake cakes.
n The telly is switched off so the family can read library books.
n You have been brought up to regard good, clean second-hand clothes as no problem.
n You have been brought up to disregard expensive designer labels. And the confidence to see off the bully who disses your denims.
n Your homework is correct because dad is keeping up with a refresher course in maths.
n You are in child poverty but somehow the parents got you a cool computer even though the keyboard is a bit worn.
n You begin your autobiography with: "We were poor but we were happy-"
Which might be a best-seller if it started: "When I look back on my childhood, I wonder how I survived at all-"
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