64,200 children living under the poverty line in Israel

64,200 children living under the poverty line in Israel

Improvements registered within particular sectors of society largely reflect steps taken by the government, the report shows.

A rise in the minimum monthly wage in July to NIS 4,825 ($1,257) — a further rise to NIS 5,000 ($1,303) is planned for January — has combined with a 2.8 per cent rise in employment to benefit middle income earners.

An increase in in child benefits — after a cut in 2013 — led to a 1% drop in poverty among the population of children and youth, up to age 18, and — combined with a rise in income from work and a decrease in the average number of children — led to a 5.6% drop in the percentage of ultra-Orthodox Jews below the poverty line.

Welfare changes also benefited working single parent families, whose presence below the poverty line dropped by 16%.

The proportion of elderly among the poor saw a very slight 1.4% reduction (from 23.1% to 21.7%) in 2015, thanks to benefit increases for those on income support introduced in December 2015. The fruits of these increases, together with those of a further benefit included in the 2017 state budget, will be more visible in future poverty reports, the NII says.

A rise in disability allowances last year and a new children’s savings scheme due to start in January — the government will invest NIS 50 per month per child up to the age of 18, backdated to May 2015 — are also expected to have a positive impact, although the benefits of the latter will only be seen over the long term when the savings schemes are cashed.

Gross monthly income available to the average family — including benefits and compulsory payments — now stands at NIS 18,674 — $4,865 (the net salary of NIS 15,431, or $4,020 — having gone up by 2.5% compared to 2014).

Article: TimeOfIsrael.com