Last week Unicef published a study of childhood across 21 of the world's industrialised countries (the OECD countries). "An Overview of Child Well-being in Rich Countries" was based on the analysis of forty indicators pertaining to the years 2000-2003 which were grouped into six different dimensions: material well-being, health and safety, education, peer and family relationships, behaviours and risks, and young people’s own subjective sense of well-being.
The league table obtained from the average of all these indicators show the UK to be the worst country in the OECD to be a child in!
These findings were met by the British with shock and strong reactions, as reported in this BBC news piece, this article in the Guardian. and this comment in the Observer. After all New Labour has been in power since 1997... Yet another headache for Gordon Brown.
CHILD WELL-BEING TABLE (Overall assessment)
9. Republic of Ireland
15. Czech Republic
20. United States
21. United Kingdom
Other key points at-a-glance here.
Click on study cover to access the Unicef PDF file