157.248 children living in poverty in Turkey, says CHP lawmaker

Republican People’s Party (CHP) deputy Murat Emir has revealed that 157.248 children in Turkey are living in poverty, to the extent that their families cannot even meet their basic needs.

In a social media post Emir said these numbers were collected by the Family and Social Services Ministry-led Social and Economic Support (SED) program. The aim of SED is to support families in taking care of the financial needs of their children until their situation improves. According to Emir, there has been a considerable increase in the number of families that have applied to SED in the last two years.

“The number of families applying to SED has steadily increased since 2020, when the number was at 129.422,” he said. “This shows that the economic crisis in Turkey has deepened over the years, contrary to what the government would like us to believe.”

Emir criticized the government for not taking poverty seriously and trying paint an optimistic picture when in fact more and more families were struggling to get by. “Government officials are living in luxury, while families are not able to take care of their own children,” he added.

Over the past several years Turkey has been suffering from a deteriorating economy, with high inflation and unemployment as well as a poor human rights record. President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan is criticized for mishandling the economy, emptying the state’s coffers and establishing one-man rule in the country where dissent is suppressed and opponents are jailed on politically motivated charges.

A staggeringly high cost of living has become the new normal in Turkey, where recent increases in food and utility prices are pushing up inflation, further crippling the purchasing power of citizens.

An increasing number of Turks have complained on social media about rising electricity bills and falling into debt. Many have said even basic foods such as vegetables have become a luxury as prices have risen by nearly 400 percent.

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