ALMOST 3,000 children in Redditch and Bromsgrove in poverty are missing out on crucial help that could keep them warm, shocking new figures by The Children’s Society reveal.

There are 2,011 youngsters in Redditch and 802 in Bromsgrove in families that are not getting the Warm Home Discount.

This provides a £135 annual rebate on fuel bills - enough to cover a typical family’s energy bills for a month.

The Children’s Society argues that this crucial support would help put an end to parents having to make harsh choices between giving their children a balanced meal and turning the heating on.

The charity is calling on the government, which announced that it was extending the scheme until 2016, to make the it automatically available to all families with children who are living in poverty.

The Children’s Society’s chief executive Matthew Reed said: “It is alarming that huge numbers of children in the West Midlands are growing up in a cold home. The scale of the problem, as these figures show, is truly appalling.

"The government must take decisive action now to move children in from the cold and help stop their parents from having to make this terrible choice between heating and eating."

He added: “By making the Warm Home Discount automatically available to all children living in poverty, the government can give these families a lifeline to help them out of poverty, and they should do it now.”

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