One in six pensioners are now living in poverty in the United Kingdom, according to a new report from the Joseph Rowntree Foundation (JRF) charity. Elderly people are cutting down on the amount of food they buy in order to pay their heating bills. One pensioner in eight has been forced to economize on supermarket shopping for heating up their places. And one in five has also put off paying household bills as they struggle to stay warm. Overall one in 10 Britons lives in “fuel poverty” and cannot afford to pay energy bills. The situation isn’t much different in the continent. The new report published by French charity the Secours Catholique shows that around 8.8 million people living below the poverty line in France in 2017. In France this means they are living on an income of less than €1,026 a month, and many of them live on considerably less. In its report, the association highlights the worrying trend of the elderly becoming increasingly poor in France, with the proportion of over-60’s living in poverty climbing up to exceed 10 percent. In the year 2016, 19.2% of European population is more than 65 years old, and 32,1% of them live all alone without partners and children, which makes their life even harder in their later life. – Statistics from the European Union.
On the other hand, a third of EU households are composed of a single person, according to new figures released this month. Out of 220 million homes in the European Union, 33 percent were lived in by just one person. In Sweden that number was over half of households (52 percent), followed by Lithuania, Denmark and Finland. The lowest amount of people living alone was recorded in Poland, Slovakia, Portugal and Malta. A quarter (25 percent) of households consisted of couples without children, while 20 percent were couples with children. Finland had the highest share of couples living together without children at 32 per cent, while Ireland had the largest proportion of couples living with children at 28 per cent. The Eurostat study of data collected in 2016 found that just four percent of European households were made up of single parents living with children. At 9 percent, Denmark had the highest share of households consisting of single parents living with children. The remaining 18 percent were made up were made up of other types of households such as house shares. The largest average household size was recorded in Croatia at 2.8 people, while the smallest was in Sweden with 1.9 people. Almost two thirds of households in Europe were composed of one or two people.