welfare

Irrelevance has a human cost

Sheila Gilmore  |  28 March 2017

Only by convincing the electorate that Labour is a credible alternative government can we tackle the inequities of Britain’s social security system, argues Progress strategy board member Sheila Gilmore I have a confession to make. I have not seen ‘ I, Daniel Blake’. I am sure it is a powerful film, but I do not need to be convinced. …

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Budget 2017: 20 Tory failures

Alison McGovern MP  |  8 March 2017

From abandoning their deficit targets to slashing funding for education, it is clear the Tories are failing on their own terms, argues Progress chair Alison McGovern MP Debt The Tories have delayed their target on debt three times since 2010 Background: Their original target (2011) was to have debt falling by 2015-16. Then in 2014 that was …

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Universal credit in disarray

Margaret Greenwood MP  |  15 February 2017

The government’s universal credit policy has proved to be neither fair nor simple, argues shadow minister for employment and inequalities Margaret Greenwood MP In 2010, Iain Duncan-Smith proclaimed that universal credit would restore ‘fairness and simplicity’ to the social security system by replacing a range of in-work benefits with a single payment. The aim was to …

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Holding the powerful to account

Karen Buck MP  |  11 November 2016

This summer, the joint work and pensions/business, innovation and skills parliamentary select committee inquiry into the collapse of British Home Stores and its pension scheme concluded with one of the most devastating reports to come out of the select committee process. The report described  the ‘systematic plunder of BHS at the cost of the 11,000 jobs and …

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Practical compassion

Sheila Gilmore  |  28 October 2016

On ‘welfare ‘ Labour is struggling to find the right policy and language. In the last parliament we spent a lot of time attacking the Conservative-Liberal Democrat coalition government’s policies, through debates on the welfare reform bill, opposition led debates, and at prime minister’s questions. There was no lack of anger and passion. The Tories …

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Solving Britain’s early years crisis

James Metcalfe  |  4 August 2016

In 1999, Labour pledged to eradicate child poverty by declaring that ‘no child be left behind’. Whilst in government, it was Labour’s determination to tackle inequality and promote social mobility that saw the creation of Sure Start and the establishment of a National Minimum Wage. But whilst Labour made huge strides to create equality of …

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Social Policy in a Cold Climate: Policies And Their Consequences Since The Crisis

Carys Roberts  |  20 June 2016

Too often, the actual effects of past policy decisions are not fully evaluated or even remembered in the public discourse, though doing so would tell us a lot about the wisdom of current decisions. Social Policy in a Cold Climate, the result of a mammoth research programme by the London School of Economics’ Centre for …

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A basic income would hurt, not help

Glen Mitchell  |  13 June 2016

The idea of a universal basic income is not without merit and Christabel Edwards argues the case well as do others most notably the RSA who have been strongly advocating for the concept over last year. However, I would argue that three key questions need to be answered before Labour commits to taking such a …

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The Welfare Trait: How State Benefits Affect Personality

Nida Broughton  |  19 April 2016

The central argument of The Welfare Trait by Adam Perkins, an expert in the neurobiology of personality, is that the welfare state causes a proliferation of adults with ‘employment-resistant’ personalities, at great cost to society and the economy. The logic goes like this: People who claim welfare score lower on measures of personality like agreeableness …

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A small hole in the safety net

Christabel Edwards  |  8 April 2016

Those of us who believe in giving a helping hand to the most vulnerable in society seem forever on the back foot these days. Benefits and welfare have now become dirty words; much of this comes from the media with the dominant narrative of scroungers and layabouts trying to pick the pockets of hard-working taxpayers. …

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