Income is the money received by individuals or groups over a period of time including from employment, pensions and benefits. Having sufficient income allows people to pay for goods and services needed to fully participate in society and to maintain health.

Inequalities in income are a fundamental cause of health inequalities.  They are strongly associated with other factors that affect health such as housing, behavioural risk factors (including smoking, alcohol use) and employment status.

Income domain – English Indices of Deprivation 2019

Sufficient income is required to lead a healthy life. Trafford has an average weekly income of £511.6, higher than England average of £451.2, highest in the Northwest and in its group of similar authorities (Wider Determinants of Health, 2018).  It is estimated that 10.7% of Trafford’s population experience income deprivation. Trafford ranks 166 out of 317 local authority districts in England on this measure (where 1 is the most income deprived district) (Trafford Data Lab, 2019).

However, examining income inequalities at Trafford level masks considerable inequalities with in Trafford neighbourhoods and wards.  10 out of 138 (7.2%) of Trafford LSOAs rank in the 10% most deprived in England on this measure: 2 in Bucklow-St-Martins, 2 in St Mary’s, 3 in Clifford, 1 in Stretford, 1 in Village, and 1 in Sale Moor (IMD, 2019). The proportion of the population experiencing income deprivation reaches 26.6% in one small area of Trafford (IMD, 2019).

Income Deprivation Affecting Children – English Indices of Deprivation 2019

This subdomain measures the proportion of all children aged 0 to 15 living in income deprived families. Trafford ranks 214 out of 317 districts in England on the average 2019 Income Deprivation Affecting Children Index (IDACI) score.  This represents a decrease in relative deprivation on 2015 when Trafford ranked 196 out of 317. Around 11.7% of Trafford 0-15 year olds experience income deprivation on this measure that rises to 44.1% in the most deprived LSOA. Five out of 138 (3.6%) of Trafford LSOAs rank in the 10% most deprived in England on this measure: 2 in Bucklow-St-Martins, 1 in St Mary’s, 1 in Clifford, and 1 in Sale Moor (Trafford Data Lab, 2019).

Income Deprivation Affecting Older People - English Indices of Deprivation 2019

This subdomain measures the proportion of all those aged 60 or over who experience income deprivation. Trafford ranks 134 out of 317 districts in England on the average 2019 IDAOP score – this represents Trafford’s worst relative ranking across all domains in the 2019 Indices. Around 13% of Trafford residents aged 60+ years experiencing income deprivation on this measure that rises to 56.8% in the most deprived LSOA. Ten out of 138 (7.2%) of Trafford LSOAs rank in the 10% most deprived LSOAs in England on this measure: 6 LSOAs in Clifford, 2 in Longford, 1 in St Mary’s and 1 in Stretford ward (Trafford Data Lab, 2019).

Child Poverty

Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) and HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC) publishes the Children in low-income families local area statistics by Local authorities, wards and LSOAs (small areas with average of 1,500 population and 650 households) to provide a more coherent picture of children in low-income families. Children in low-income families are defined as children in families in receipt of Universal Credit, Tax Credits or Housing Benefits at any point in the reference year. Latest data is available for the year 2018/19.

On the Children in Low Income Families Local Measure in 2018/19:

  • 6,473 (12.8%) of Trafford under 16s are living in poverty, lower than UK average (18.4%). This is an increase from the 2014/15 rate (11.1%) of 1.7%
  • Two-thirds (39.5%) of these children are in lone parent families
  • There is a wide variation across wards with 3.3% children in low-income families in Hale Central in the South, to 30.8% in Clifford in the North.
  • LSOA level data highlights even wider variation (<5 children to 218 children) and some pockets of child poverty dispersed more widely across the borough.This arguably provides a measure of the distribution of child poverty across the borough than a definitive measure of the actual number of children affected

Fuel Poverty

Households are considered to be fuel poor if they have required fuel costs above average (the national median level) and, were they to spend that amount, they would be left with a residual income below the official poverty line. Fuel poverty is different from general poverty as not all poor households are fuel poor, and some households would not normally be considered poor but could be pushed into fuel poverty if they have high energy costs. Numerous characteristics are associated with fuel poverty that can be broadly grouped into Dwelling and household characteristics.

Dwelling characteristics

  • Households with insulated cavity walls least likely to be in fuel poverty
  • Risk increases with size of dwelling
  • Higher levels in older compared to newer properties (4-times higher in houses built between 1900-1918 compared to those built post 1990)

Household characteristics

  • Higher in private rented sector compared to owner-occupiers
  • Higher among unemployed or in full-time education compared to working or retired

Around 10,327 (10.4%) Trafford households in fuel poverty (Wider Determinants of Health, 2018), similar to England average of 10.3%. Trafford ranks 2nd highest amongst its statistical neighbours on fuel poverty.  Fuel poverty is strongly linked to cold homes. About 1 in 5 excess winter deaths are attributable to the coldest quarter of housing (Trafford had 63 excess winter deaths in 2018/19).

Food Poverty

Limited data on food poverty is present for Trafford. Data from Stretford food bank in Trafford for the year 2018/19 suggests that 1,777 vouchers were issued of which 1,380 (78%) were fulfilled. Around 704 (51%) of these vouchers were issued to single individuals, 391 (28%) to single parent families, 136 (10%) to couple with children and 81 (6%) to couples. Examining vouchers fulfilled by crisis type shows that 29.5% were due to low income, 20.9% due to benefit delays, 19.9% due to benefit change and 7.3% were due to debts.

Further details can be found in the Poverty Needs Assessment for Trafford here.