media

  • Adding to the shame of poverty: the public, politicians and the media

    Issue 148 (Summer 2014)
    article

    The denigration of people in poverty is not new. It has been evident since at least the dissolution of the monasteries under Henry VIII when the Tudor state assumed de facto responsibility for the care of ‘paupers’, and the terms ‘deserving’ and ‘undeserving’ were coined. The words used have changed and the vehemence of the language has ebbed and flowed, but the divisive, self-justifying distinction between the workless, rogues, idlers and scroungers on the one hand and the hardworking, law-abiding, responsible, ‘middle class’, taxpayer has not. Robert Walker and Elaine Chase draw on their recent research to highlight how recent welfare reforms continue our long tradition of shaming people who live in poverty.

  • Editorial: Poverty cannot be reduced to a one-dimensional caricature

    Issue 148 (Summer 2014)
    article

    As the consultation on the government’s latest three-year child poverty consultation closes, it seeks to articulate the policies it sees as reducing poverty, even as it prevaricates over how to define it. This issue of Poverty explores questions that are surely important to anyone seeking to reduce poverty, and to understand it. What does poverty look like? How does it feel?

  • The poor of the mass media

    Issue 148 (Summer 2014)
    article

    Stories and pictures in the mass media form an important basis for creating opinions of ‘the poor’ and welfare recipients. The media content influences who we think these people are, how we think they behave and what we think should be done to either help or punish them. In The Rise and Fall of Social Cohesion, Christian Albrekt Larsen illustrates how the US and UK are caught in a vicious circle. High levels of poverty and a targeted welfare system produce a large volume of newsworthy negative stories, which make further punishment the most likely political response. Who would want to help scroungers and spongers? In contrast, Sweden and Denmark are caught in a virtuous circle. Low levels of poverty and a universal welfare system reduce the amount of newsworthy negative stories and allow room for stories about the deserving poor. Who does not want to help our ordinary fellow citizens in need? Here, he describes his research.

  • CPAG Briefing for Autumn Statement 2012

    December 2012
    briefing

    A full media briefing for the Autumn Statement on 5 December 2012, the needs of low income families that the Chancellor must address, and other related background information and resource.

  • Benefits debate failing ordinary families: new polling and CPAG letter to party leaders

    September 12, 2013
    press release

    The current debate about social security is failing ordinary families, according to a new campaign, ‘People Like Us’, being launched today by Child Poverty Action Group.

    The campaign is supported by new polling suggesting the public strongly rejects the idea that the government understands the concerns of people on low and middle incomes.

    Read more