A new report from the Catholic University of Argentina (UCA) has concluded that an additional 600,000 children under the age of 17 fell into poverty in 2018, pushing the child poverty rate up by four points to 41.2 percent.
The new multi-dimensional study, which measures poverty by income and "rights deficiencies" – such as access to food, healthcare and education – estimated that in the third quarter of 2018, 63.4 percent of children and adolescents were deprived of at least one right, while 51.7 percent lived in households with insufficient income.
According to the report, Poverty, rights and childhoods in Argentina (2010-2018), prepared by the specialists Ianina Tuñón and Santiago Poy, 41.2 percent of children were affected by both a lack of income and a lack of at least one right last year, a figure that represents some 4.7 million young people in total.
Comparatively, at the end of 2017, the previous year, that figure stood at 37.1 percent, according to UCA's specialists. Then there were 4.1 million children in poverty, out of a total of 11.8 million children aged under 17.
A recent UCA report concluded that in terms of the whole population – adults and children – the poverty rate is 31.3 percent.
Meanwhile, extreme poverty among children rose by one point in a year, UCA concluded, rising from 4.1 percent to 5.1 percent at the end of 2018. Today, there are more than 590,000 children considered destitute in Argentina than a year ago, according to the data.
The increase is the largest since 2010, when UCA began measuring poverty in urban areas.
The most widespread problem was housing, either due to a lack of a home or living in an inadequate one, affecting 29.5 percent of children under 17. That was followed by sanitation (23.7 percent), healthcare (22.4 percent) and food (11.2 percent).
Argentina is currently experiencing a severe economic crisis and recession. Inflation reached 47.6 percent in 2018 and prices have risen by 54.7 percent over the last 12 months.