FAMILIES across East Yorkshire are to be given the chance to air their views on how child poverty can be tackled in the county.

Studies have shown that 11 per cent of children in the area are living on the poverty line and there are big differences in deprivation in various parts of East Yorkshire, despite its perception as being a well-off part of the country.

East Riding of Yorkshire Council’s cabinet will next week be asked to approve sending its draft child poverty strategy out for consultation.

Families, children and young people, and organisations such as the Children’s Trust are being asked to tell the authority what they believe needs to be done to prevent youngsters being left behind. It comes as The Press has launched its Stamp Out Poverty campaign, aimed at highlighting and reducing inequality and deprivation.

The council has compiled a “needs assessment” analysis of East Yorkshire’s child poverty, but said there was still a lot to do to understand the reasons behind this picture. It discovered 13 per cent of children in north Goole – and almost 25 per cent in one particular area – live in poverty, compared with only one per cent in Howden, while a south Bridlington area is among the two per cent most-deprived parts of England.

The draft strategy said support must be “poverty-proofed” to guarantee help for the most vulnerable families and must encourage them to seek help early rather than drifting into difficulties. It also aims to improve employment opportunities for young people, parents and carers and will look at transport issues saying the “large area” of East Yorkshire makes accessing support services difficult for some families.

Schemes to address travel issues could include encouraging community transport providers to “broaden their services”, and increased council support for voluntary car schemes where volunteers pick up passengers in return for a basic mileage rate.

A report by Alison Michalska, the council’s director of children, family and adult services, said a “flexible” approach should be taken towards families struggling to pay debts.

“There may be vulnerable families living in poverty, or at risk of living in poverty, who have never had contact with targeted services, and there may be families who have had support in the past for feel unwilling or unable to access it again,” it said, adding there was a need to “streamline, speed up and de-stigmatise” routes to help.