National survey ranks Moray as ‘poor region’ to bring up families

A NATIONAL SURVEY that lists Moray as one of the poorest Scottish regions in which to bring up a family has been slammed by the Moray Council.

The Family and Childcare Trust produced a table that ranks all 32 Scottish local authority regions according to a range of benchmarks including incomesperty, wellbeing, education, public services and housing.

According to their final report Moray is rated in 22nd place – blaming low pay earned in the region and a poorer level of education attained by parents. The report claimed that “median wages are low” in what it describes as a rural local authority where “adults lack higher level qualifications”.

In what they describe as their ‘National Family Report Card”, the Trust says that adults in Moray often work long hours or at weekends in lower paid jobs, while the region was also placed second from bottom for young people having access to early-years teachers – claiming that only 14.1% of young children are being taught to an adequate standard.

Moray also emerged in a poor light in terms of leisure and cultural pursuits, with an annual spend of less than £100 per head of the population.

A spokesman for Moray Council insisted that the survey had failed to take full account of military earnings in the region, telling the P&J: “While the survey offers an important snapshot in of certain trends, it uses very specific indicators which can affect the ranking of Moray compared to other council areas.

“The average salary figure quoted does not include data from Ministry of Defence personnel, which is estimated to be worth £75million to the local economy.

“Parents bringing up children in the area already know that Moray is one of the safest, most family-friendly areas in Scotland – both in terms of low crime and the personal safety of the population.”

Neighbouring Aberdeenshire came out fifth in the ranking table while Glasgow came bottom.