Poverty, gender and life cycle: Portraits of poverty in the European Union

30-11-2017

Nearly a quarter of the population in the European Union (23.8 %) were at risk of poverty or social exclusion in 2015. Living conditions, the degree of insecurity and the routes into and out of poverty vary according to age and gender, as well as varying over the course of a lifetime. Children are the most affected population in Europe today, while young people aged between 18 and 24 now represent 10% of those at risk of poverty or social exclusion in the EU. There is little difference between the sexes at this age, but it is a key difference among older people. The mid-life period is characterised by substantial variations based on gender, family circumstances and/or professional status. Women, single-parent families, large families or low-income workers are, at this point in their lives, more at risk of poverty or social exclusion. Lastly, older people are now simultaneously the least affected by poverty on average, and also among the most vulnerable, in the case of women.

Nearly a quarter of the population in the European Union (23.8 %) were at risk of poverty or social exclusion in 2015. Living conditions, the degree of insecurity and the routes into and out of poverty vary according to age and gender, as well as varying over the course of a lifetime. Children are the most affected population in Europe today, while young people aged between 18 and 24 now represent 10% of those at risk of poverty or social exclusion in the EU. There is little difference between the sexes at this age, but it is a key difference among older people. The mid-life period is characterised by substantial variations based on gender, family circumstances and/or professional status. Women, single-parent families, large families or low-income workers are, at this point in their lives, more at risk of poverty or social exclusion. Lastly, older people are now simultaneously the least affected by poverty on average, and also among the most vulnerable, in the case of women.