Posted 11 августа 2021,, 06:47

Published 11 августа 2021,, 06:47

Modified 24 декабря 2022,, 22:37

Updated 24 декабря 2022,, 22:37

Return to the third world: every fourth child in Russia lives below the poverty line

Return to the third world: every fourth child in Russia lives below the poverty line

11 августа 2021, 06:47
Rosstat has published data on child poverty for 2019. There are more families with children living below the poverty line even before the pandemic. Every fourth child lives in poverty. The situation is even worse in large families. Half of the children live in them below the living wage of 11.2 thousand rubles.

Elena Ivanova, Natalia Seibil

Rosstat always publishes these data with a two-year delay. Every fourth child is below the poverty line - that was two years ago. This means that, regardless of the pandemic, poverty in the country is growing. We will find out what will happen in 2020 or 2021 in a year or two, but it is already clear that it will not be better.

Children live worst of all in the Russian provinces. There, the level of child poverty in small towns reaches 50% , in the countryside it is slightly better, there this figure is 44.5% . On average, in Russia every third child lives in poverty in young families, and 30% in incomplete families.

If children are our future, then you will not wish the enemy such a future.

Social psychologist Alexei Roshchin makes a reservation that the concept of "poverty" in Russia is very conditional - try, live on 11.2 thousand rubles a month. It is impossible to live on this money, unless on a dispute or as an experiment, you cannot live on a living wage all the time:

- Despite this, a quarter of our families live with such an income per child, even understated by the efforts of Rosstat and the government. This immediately explains why in Russia they are in no hurry to have children, since it is known that the appearance of a child immediately brings a family down a couple of classes lower than it occupied before. And many children are practically a sentence in this sense. At least for most families, except for a few percent. This is why it is clear why we have a decline in the birth rate and population decline.

Indeed, the situation with large families is even more deplorable. Almost every second child lives in them below the poverty line. As of January 1, 2021, there were almost 2 million children with many children in Russia, and poverty reigns in most of them. But there are those who do not despair.

Larisa Vaybert, her husband and 5 children lived in a Siberian taiga village. The children began to grow up, and the parents decided that they needed communication and education, but here - only foxes and a lame neighbor, Uncle Vitya. We decided to move south to the Stavropol Territory. They all sold, moved, lived in a rented house. And then the coronavirus covered the country.

Who knew that it would be like this, writes Larisa in her video blog . In spite of everything, they bought their own house, which turned out to be hell. There is only one room, there is a kitchen right there. There is no water, there is no sewerage or heating either. They began to rebuild the hut. But prices for building materials skyrocketed. Now the whole family eats from their own garden, and my mother decided to start a video blog on social networks. Larisa talks about her everyday life, how the construction is going on, what is growing in the garden, how they are trying to establish a normal life for children - and they are waiting for help from kind people.

We have programs to support large families in our country, but as for housing, says Alexei Roshchin, all assistance is not reduced to giving money, which is so badly needed by large families, but to benefits in paying for housing. , certificates and other papers that get them in the end the most persistent. The Russian state is by no means the discoverer of the "dynamo" for the poor.

- This is a well-known scheme in all poor countries: they provide support, but they surround everything with so many bureaucracy and queues that it is impossible to take advantage of this. Especially for families with many children, where parents struggle in two jobs, sit with children, of course, they do not have time to collect and receive these certificates. Therefore, this is largely virtual support, '' says Roshchin.

The 10 thousand born in the pandemic for a family look quite good against the background of a monthly income of 11 thousand rubles, but they will not be able to radically change the situation. The problem is that Russian families are deeply indebted and often take new loans to pay off old ones, so there is no clearance, says Alexei Roshchin.

But the Russian economy is not in the best condition now, says the economist, professor at the Russian University of Economics named after G.V. Plekhanova Yulia Finogenova. GDP has practically not grown in recent years, not to mention last year, when it fell by 3.1 %. If one of the parents lost their job, then the other must bear all the costs. Therefore, children have become the most unprotected category of the population:

- The existing support measures are not enough. They need to be strengthened. Maternity capital, which is given after the birth of the second and third child, the directions where it can be used are rather limited. In addition, even an apartment that was bought using maternity capital is in the future less liquid than an apartment bought with a mortgage loan. You must register a child on this living space. Here we are talking about the fact that support measures are not enough. - Julia Finogenova is sure.

Provision of Russian children and large families will depend on how the situation in the world commodity markets develops, says Yulia Finogenova. And although oil revenues to the budget have decreased in recent years, the contribution of minerals to world GDP will grow after the pandemic, and resource prices will also rise, which will have a positive effect on the Russian budget.

- Despite the fact that our government has proclaimed a transition from a resource-based economy to a high-tech one, there are no significant shifts in this direction yet. I think that in the next five years we will be very much dependent on raw material prices. If prices stabilize, incomes stabilize, then it will be possible to say that social support of the population can be strengthened. There will be additional indexations, an increase in pensions and incomes of large families.

But families with children cannot wait five years. They do not think in such temporal categories. They care about what to set the table today, whether there is enough money for milk tomorrow and how to get the children to school when the wind is in their pockets. The maternity capital, which the Russian authorities are so proud of, provide significant assistance to families. But if you divide these 500 thousand by 18 years, which is how much time it takes to raise a child in Russia, you get mere pennies per month, says Alexey Roshchin . And there are a lot of spending restrictions, especially this does not help:

- Benefits in any case are good, but if a family has no income, then it does not matter how much it needs to pay for an apartment - eight thousand or five, if it does not even have three. People just need to allocate money. They have no money, there is nowhere to take them. The economy is stagnating, there are no well-paid jobs, so what happens is that our children are practically starving. And this should have a bad effect on the future.

This is what the psychologist, academician of the Russian Academy of Education, head of the Department of Personality Psychology, Moscow State University, speaks about. MV Lomonosov Alexander Asmolov . Several years ago, the HSE conducted a study on poverty among Russian children. It was based on the so-called Hackman curve, a Nobel laureate in economics. He examined the dependence of investment in children and the well-being of a country at different stages of development, from preschool to high school:

- The more we invest with you in childhood in the early stages of development, the more self-realization of children, the higher the standard of living and prosperity of the country. And the opposite trend, when we are faced with the phenomena of poverty, misery and the monstrous data that you are talking about. We are dealing with the so-called deprived childhood.

Deprivation, partial reduction or complete inability to meet basic needs, leads to risks for the future generation of Russian citizens. First of all, we are talking about the risks to the health of the child at various stages of development. Alexander Asmolov believes:

- These data are indicated by the formula SOS, the anthropological catastrophe of childhood in the Russian Federation. In the broadest sense of the word, we are talking about a sharp undermining of the health of the nation. This is a multidimensional thing. This can manifest itself in serious violations of the psychological health of children, it can manifest itself in a sharp increase in children at risk. This leads to the growth of children with problems. Do you know how autism among children is growing in Russia, how monstrously neuroticism among children is growing, for which the responsibility is unfairly made only to the school?

In poor families, especially in large families, there is a sharp deficit of attention in relation to children, which leads to deviations in mental development. In order for a child to be happy, he must see happy people around him. But if parents have enough strength only to make ends meet, anger, irritation and discontent become the most common emotions in such families, says psychologist Anetta Orlova . Too many children start to resent the world because their parents are also offended by the world:

- All this is transmitted. People grow up who at any cost want to break free from the captivity of want, and for such people all means are good, because their childhood experience is quite negative. They don't think about justice, they don't believe in it. They understand that they need to achieve everything themselves.

If you look at all the election programs of any party that is currently running for elections, then in all programs you can see a minimal understanding of the role of child development. Alexander Asmolov calls them “temporary worker programs”. Children have tremendous opportunities to compensate, but social risks are also growing.

- Parenting is childhood risk insurance. This risk insurance system, according to Rosstat data, brings Russia closer to an anthropological catastrophe. In a situation with elections, when all these parties are thinking how to get their butts in the Duma, increased political attention to this problem is necessary. It should be turned to the problems of childhood. We are doing anything, but this problem speaks of the deformation of the priorities of the Russian state power and politics, - Asmolov believes.

Meanwhile, the situation with child poverty has remained stable and difficult since the 90s. Any deterioration in the financial situation is immediately reflected in the dynamics of the birth rate. In the vast majority of countries around the world, says independent demographer Alexei Raksha , families with children are statistically poorer than childless ones, because the family's income is divided by a larger number of its members. In developed countries, the authorities compensate for this inequality with tax breaks and benefits for each child. In Russia, despite the upcoming elections, the forecast is disappointing, experts say. For the situation to change, a lot has to happen. Alexey Roshchin says:

- Any economic reforms without political reforms are doomed to failure. The same ruling class will emasculate at any stage. Therefore, political reforms must take place, then there will be hope for a revival of the economy after a deeper recession that accompanies any reforms.

But political reform or oil prices will someday solve this problem - children need help immediately. Therefore, Alexander Asmolov, head of the School of Anthropology of the Future, calls on the authorities - from Valentina Matvienko to the Security Council - to think over the government's actions right now.