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Scale of childhood anxiety caused by family debt

Survey conducted for The Children's Society Credit: Anthony Devlin/PA Wire/PA Images

It's claimed that more than ten thousand children across the region are at risk of mental illness because their families are trapped in debt.

The Children's Society says 90,000 children in the North East are living in families which are in debt.

In North Yorkshire the figure is 25,000 children.

A spokesman for the charity said many of these children suffer from worry, anxiety and bullying.

“Again and again we have raised the urgent problem of families who are trapped by debt, and whose children often pay the price with their mental and physical health.

“With unfair and unsustainable repayment plans, hidden charges, soaring interest, visits from intimidating bailiffs and the fear of eviction, the odds are stacked against parents who are desperate to find a way out of their debt. Meanwhile mums and dads are being forced to make impossible decisions between feeding and clothing their children, and paying the bills.

“It is now absolutely clear that this problem is not going away unless the Government takes action to give families the breathing space they need to get their finances back on track. Acting now could have a hugely beneficial impact, not just on family finances in the short term but on the futures of some of the country’s most vulnerable children.”

– Matthew Reed, The Children’s Society

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