Tracy Shildrick

  • Ending child poverty: a right or a responsibility?

    Issue 142 (Summer 2012)
    article

    This year the European Union will publish its Recommendation on Child Poverty. This is expected to be based on three ‘pillars’ – access to adequate resources, access to services and opportunities, and children’s participation – and to argue for a strong rights-based approach to eradicating child poverty. In 2011, the current coalition administration published the first government child poverty strategy in the UK. At its heart, lies a commitment to ‘strengthening families, encouraging responsibility, promoting work, guaranteeing fairness and providing support to the most vulnerable’. Stephen Crossley and Tracy Shildrick explore these two very different approaches.

  • Low pay, no pay churning: the hidden story of work and worklessness

    Issue 142 (Summer 2012)
    article

    Rather than the popular image of feckless people languishing in long-term unemployment, recent research for the Joseph Rowntree Foundation has found that the predominant experience of being out of work is one of moving in and out of low-paid, short-term jobs, and on and off benefits. This cycling, or ‘churning’, between work and no work, with people taking poor quality jobs that are often paid too little to move them away from poverty, not only runs directly counter to the dominant story about welfare dependency, but has also been largely ignored by successive governments. Tracy Shildrick outlines some of the research findings and argues that policy must now focus on the quality, as well as the number, of jobs available if work is to provide a lasting route out of poverty.