inequality

  • Campaigning on child poverty: the New Zealand experience

    Issue 153 (Winter 2016)
    article

    New Zealand is traditionally regarded as a quiet, safe, egalitarian country with nothing in it more dangerous than a few hobbits. The reality, however, is that between the mid-1980s and the mid-2000s, it experienced the biggest increase in the gap between the rich and the rest of any developed country. The result is that, as the economy has delivered a growing share of national income to the rich, there has been relatively little for the rest to share. Levels of poverty, and child poverty in particular, have increased dramatically in the last 30 years. Here, Max Rashbrooke assesses the impact of New Zealand’s Child Poverty Action Group and other campaigners working to reverse this trend, and uncovers some familiar issues.

  • Budget 2014: Child Poverty Action Group on the impact on families

    March 19, 2014
    press release

    Responding to the Chancellor’s Budget Statement today Alison Garnham, Chief Executive of Child Poverty Action Group, said:

    “Today’s Budget tries to lock-in austerity for millions of low-paid families, poor children, carers and disabled people. Announcing a cap for social security spending without a plan to address the root causes of low pay, high rents and high childcare costs, simply forces the most vulnerable in society to pay the price for inaction.

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  • Child wellbeing and income inequality in rich countries

    Issue 133 (Summer 2009)
    article

    The wellbeing and behaviour of young people have recently attracted more than the usual negative attention from the media, policy and law.

  • CPAG responds to the Autumn Statement

    5 December 2013
    news

    We have criticised the Chancellor's Autumn Statement for rationing support for children, working families and disabled people through a national cap on social security.

    See our full reaction in the CPAG press statement.

    Read more
  • Fair for who? Child maintenance and family tests.

    Prime Minister David Cameron has announced that he wants to see all domestic government policies subjected to a ‘family test’ in future, apparently to ensure that families aren’t undermined or made worse off financially.  But does the ‘family test’ itself pass the test?

    Initially at least, it may be difficult to understand why anyone would be against such an approach. Indeed, we have been arguing that government should pay attention to a wide range of policy areas, such as employment, benefits, and family support services, to reduce child poverty and help improve the lot of poor families for many years.

    One concern, however, is that it’s unclear whether the proposed ‘family test’ applies to lone parent families, too.

  • IMF warn economic inequality is threat to the economy

    April 8, 2014
    press release

    In the new World Economic Outlook published today by the International Monetary Fund, Olivier Blanchard, the IMF’s Economic Counsellor, warns that the effect of inequality on economic progress is set to become a central problem.

    Imran Hussain, Head of Policy for Child Poverty Action Group, said:

    “The IMF warning is an important reminder that reducing inequality and ending poverty is essential to a strong economy.

    “We always put children first in family life, and there’s good evidence to suggest that by doing the right thing for Britain’s children we can benefit the economy too.

    Read more
  • Inequality and instability: why more equal societies have more stable economies

    Issue 142 (Summer 2012)
    article

    According to the economic orthodoxy of the last thirty years, a stiff dose of inequality is a necessary condition for economic progress. Higher rewards and lower taxes at the top, it is claimed, boost enterprise and deliver a larger economic pie. The income gap might get wider, but eventually everybody, including those on the lowest incomes, will become better off. Here, Stewart Lansley puts the theory to the test.

  • Looking for families affected by the benefit cap

    9 August 2016
    news

    This autumn the benefit cap will be cut, squeezing low-income families even further and pushing more people into poverty. We are looking for test cases to legally challenge the benefit cap.

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  • Promoting fairness? Lowering the benefit cap will push more families into poverty

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    This autumn the benefit cap will be cut, squeezing low-income families even further and pushing more people into poverty. The Welfare Reform & Work Act 2016 lowers the cap to £23,000 per annum for families (or £15,410 for single claimants) in London and £20,000 for families (or £13,400 for single claimants) outside of London. There are currently 3.9 million children living in poverty. Projections from the Institute for Fiscal Studies suggests that child poverty could rise by 50 per cent by 2020. Tightening the cap and taking away more support from low-income households will have a devastating effect on families and children.

  • Riots, redistribution and reparation

    Issue 140 (Autumn 2011)
    article

    Many people have asked why a tiny proportion of (mostly) young people rioted this summer. They have also questioned the part that rising inequalities could have played in making many people poor and some angry. After all, young adults in Britain today have only ever known a country in which income and wealth have been redistributed from poor to rich – to the detriment of all. How much money could be saved by doing the reverse and redistributing from rich to poor? And how much reparation is required in the long run for a sense eventually to emerge that we are all in this together? Danny Dorling seeks answers from an eclectic mix of sources, including a Chinese daily newspaper, a former London gang member and the Institute for Fiscal Studies.