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Do Households Prioritise Children? Intra-Household Deprivation a Case Study of the South Pacific

Alba Lanau () and Viliami Fifita ()
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Alba Lanau: Centre d’Estudis Demogràfics
Viliami Fifita: Tonga Bureau of Statistics

Child Indicators Research, 2020, vol. 13, issue 6, No 4, 1953-1973

Abstract: Abstract There is increasing evidence of unequal access to resources within the household between children and adults. The literature suggests that patterns of intra-household inequality are context specific: while some find that households prioritise children (Main and Bradshaw 2016), others find that children are more likely to experience the consequences of poverty (Brown et al. 2018a). In Tonga, the high value of children, role of women in decision making and low extreme poverty rates suggest that households will prioritise children. However, the data does not match this expectation. Where possible households share resources equally. In contexts of low resources, both adults and children may be prioritised. This article builds on the methodology developed by Main and Bradshaw to provide the first analysis of intra-household inequalities between children and adults in the South Pacific. It argues that deprivation patterns are shaped both by household decisions on resource allocation and by wider access to resources. The approach used can be applied in other contexts to explore deprivation patterns and inform anti-poverty strategies. The article contributes to the growing literature on intra-household inequalities between children and adults.

Keywords: Child poverty; Deprivation; Intra-household; Inequality; Children; South Pacific (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2020
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DOI: 10.1007/s12187-020-09729-5

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