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Wednesday, 8 February 2012

UK children facing multiple risks to development

A new study provides evidence that one if four UK children are growing up in families where multiple risks threaten their development. The study – carried out by the Institute of Education at the University of London – highlights the diverse difficulties children are now being exposed to. The ten risk factors considered were: living in overcrowded housing; having a teenage mother; having parents with depression, a physical disability, or low skills; substance misuse or excessive alcohol intake; living in a family with financial stresses, worklessness or domestic violence. Drawing on data from 18,000 families taking part in the Millennium Cohort Study, the researchers found that 28 per cent of families faced two or more of these risk factors. Though less than 2 per cent of children were exposed to five or more factors, the researchers conclude that diverse combinations of the factors present policy-makers with significant challenges. Read 'Multiple Risk Factor's in Young Children's Development' here.

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