Previous research has shown a clear link between childhood disability and child poverty. This is related to the fact that their parents (1) need to provide more care which impedes their employment participation, and (2) more often belong to disadvantaged social categories.
However, the adverse relationship between childhood disability and child poverty can be cushioned by cash support systems. Hitherto, the literature lacks insight into how the receipt of different cash support systems is related to parental employment and social background, and what joint role these three factors play in understanding the poverty risk of these children. To fill this gap, a case study on Belgium is performed using unique and large-scale register data.
The results show that disabled children have a lower income poverty risk than non-disabled children, even when parental employment and social background are taken into account. This can be explained by the targeted cash support disabled children receive. However, a substantial group of disabled children does not receive the benefit. Hence, more could be achieved if the non-take-up would be addressed, in particular among the most vulnerable children.