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(en) Catalist #8 - Poverty gap widens under Labour

From Worker <a-infos-en@ainfos.ca>
Date Tue, 21 Oct 2003 08:55:44 +0200 (CEST)

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Remember the Tories
looking after the rich at the
expense of the poor? Remember
the jubilation when the Labour
Government was finally elected
in 1997? Remember all the
promises? Well, the latest
research from the Institute for
Fiscal Studies says the total
poverty gap - the total income
by which families fall short of
the poverty line - has increased
under Labour.
The report concludes that
children who live in the poorest
UK households have less of a
chance of escaping poverty than
when Labour came to power.
Yet, child poverty is one of
Labour's key targets, and has
been at the heart of the political
agenda since 1999.
Although some poor families
have benefited, it is the rich
who have benefited more.
According to government
surveys, 1.1 million children
live in households with less than
40% of the national average
income. Four out of 10 of these
children live in households that
do not receive any of the main
means-tested benefits - even
though they may be entitled to
More and more people are
being forced in to minimum
wage jobs that are casual,
temporary and often part-time.
It is these in low-paid minimum
wage jobs that are stuck in the
poverty trap between benefits
and a decent wage.
So, for all their talk, this
government has failed
abysmally to tackle poverty.
Their policies benefit the rich at
the expense of the poor - and
they are set to continue to do so.

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