We must act now to stop the gulf of social inequality widening in Leeds - the YEP says

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There’s a lot to celebrate about life in Leeds.

There’s a lot to celebrate about life in Leeds.

We must act now to stop the gulf of social inequality widening in Leeds - the YEP says

We must act now to stop the gulf of social inequality widening in Leeds - the YEP says

It’s a story of growth and progression as it is heralded as having the fastest rate of private-sector jobs growth in any UK city.

-> Children born in these Leeds areas will live 10 years longer, shocking inequality figures show

Leeds is the largest legal and financial centre outside of London and, such is the strength of its economy, it has attracted the likes of relocations for Channel 4 and HMRC as they establish northern bases.

But for all the accolades of a city continuing on an upward trajectory - you can’t argue with the figures.

The thriving city scene is not beneficial to everyone living in Leeds.

The thriving city scene is not beneficial to everyone living in Leeds.

They are stark, they are harsh and for those living in the shadows of the spectacle of the city centre it’s a reality.

A child growing up just seven miles down the road from another child - who could have been born on exactly the same day - their outcomes are going to be very different.

-> Yorkshire Evening Post launches special series highlighting social inequality in Leeds

One will live 10 years longer while the other child will be forced to attend an over-subscribed school.

Levels of poverty across our city are said to be rising as austerity continues to bite, and with this the gulf of social inequality is continuing to widen.

And if children in our city don’t have access to the best possible starts in life, then how are they expected to reach their full potential?

We don’t want any child to get left behind in Leeds - especially for a city that lays claims to being child-friendly.

And that’s why this week the Yorkshire Evening Post is shining the spotlight on this crucial issue, looking at the two-speed nature of Leeds.

We’ve been out and about in different communities looking at the issues impacting on those who call it their homes.

But one thing prevails - despite the pressures there remains a steely grit and determination as well as a sense of pride as communities band together to support one another.

Be that through the vital work from charities such as Zest.

-> From Harewood to Holbeck - how a Leeds charity is tackling social inequality in the city

So how do we stop the gulf growing wider for those who are proud to call Leeds their home?

It’s a problem that needs addressing - and quick.

For as long as the shining structures continue to sprout up in the city centre just a stone’s throw away will be someone living in their shadow.