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Having reliable and regular measurements of child poverty is essential to designing and implementing public policies aimed at overcoming it.

The study Child Poverty in Latin America and the Caribbean (ECLAC-UNICEF 2010) and the publication Social Panorama of Latin America 2013 (ECLAC, 2013) both measured child poverty using a multidimensional approach based on children's rights in the countries of the region. By this measurement, about 41% of the population under 18 years of age was living in poverty in 2011. In other words, nearly 71 million children and adolescents suffer hardship as a result of a deficit in the exercise of some of their rights.

The two studies were conducted under a joint programme between the Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean (ECLAC) and the UNICEF Regional Office for Latin America and the Caribbean (UNICEF-TACRO), launched in 2008 to measure, analyse and make proposals to combat child poverty. We postulate that to eliminate the scourge of child poverty, governments must integrate social policies, employment policies, and macroeconomic policies. Not only should more resources be allocated to promote children's rights and increase the supply and quality of services, social protection systems need to be expanded and made universal as well.

In order to support countries in periodically measuring child and adolescent poverty, ECLAC and UNICEF present this Guide to Estimating Child Poverty, which addresses the issue from a multidimensional perspective and a human-rights-based approach. The Guide progresses through training modules which can be accessed online and allows for the use of workshops to disseminate the methodology. The 2014 Version of the Guide is a revised and extended version of the First Edition launched in 2011. The current edition has been updated to incorporate new formulas to measure child poverty and is available in English and Spanish versions.

We hope the Guide will be useful for national statistical offices throughout the region, academia, experts, and members of civil society interested in tracking the status of child poverty and contributing to promoting policies that ensure respect for the rights enshrined in the Convention on the Rights of the Child.

Bernt Aasen
Regional Director
UNICEF Regional Office for Latin America and the Caribbean
  Alicia Bárcena
Executive Secretary
Economic Commission for Latin
America and the Caribbean (ECLAC)
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