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VerdictFactCheck concludes that Grigol Vashadze’s statement is TRUE.

 

Resume: In accordance with UNICEF’s data, 6.8% of children[1] in Georgia (nearly 49,800 children) live in extreme poverty whilst 27.6% of children (nearly 202,000 children) live in poverty.

Georgia’s Public Defender’s 2017 report also touches upon the child poverty issue. The report highlights that there are 150,186 underage people in Georgia who receive the subsistence allowance (implying they are below the poverty line). In accordance with the Social Service Agency’s data, the number of underage recipients of the subsistence allowance decreased slightly and constitutes 137,476 as of September 2018.

 

Analysis

United Opposition presidential candidate, Grigol Vashadze, stated during a meeting with voters: “150,000 children are starving in Georgia.”

FactCheck verified the situation in the country in regard to child poverty.

In accordance with the United Nations International Children's Emergency Fund (UNICEF), children are the poorest in Georgia. The UNICEF report on Welfare of the Population of Georgia indicates that poverty figures have increased in Georgia in the last two years and the number of children living in poverty has increased significantly. Population welfare research is carried out once every two years. The poverty and welfare of the population is assessed on the basis of a consumer prices analysis. When a person spends less than USD 1.25 a day, he is considered as living in extreme poverty. USD 2.5 daily is considered to be the general poverty line.

In accordance with UNICEF’s 2017 data, 6.8% of children (nearly 49,800 children) live in extreme poverty; that is, they spend less than USD 1.25 daily. Of the total amount of children, 27.6% (nearly 202,000 children) live in poverty. As for UNICEF’s methodology, children are individuals from the age of birth to 15 years.

Georgia’s Public Defender’s 2017 report also touches upon child poverty and poor living conditions. The report highlights that there are 150,186 underage people in Georgia who receive the subsistence allowance (implying they are below the poverty line). Most probably, presidential candidate Grigol Vashadze made his statement based on the Public Defender’s report.

The subsistence allowance (that is, monetary social assistance) is given to families below the poverty line. In accordance with the Social Service Agency’s data, there were 150,816 underage recipients of the subsistence allowance at the beginning of 2018. As of September 2018, this figure dropped to 137,476. In accordance with the latest data, the total amount of socially vulnerable citizens (recipients of subsistence allowance) is 417,065 and of that amount nearly 33% are underage.

 

[1] Age 0-15 years.