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The U.K. in 2019 -

(232 Posts)
Whitewavemark2 Sun 14-Apr-19 09:05:53

After nearly a decade of Tory Government it is useful to have some sort of oversight as to the type of society the Tories have constructed during their tenure in office.

Housing and low income. The return of Victorian Slums

Leading housing academics -Jugg and Rhodes have produced a report. Listed below are some of the findings
“90% of the 1.4 million households renting on low incomes in England are being put at risk by harmful living conditions or pushed below the poverty line by rents they cannot afford
30% living in non-decent homes
10% living in overcrowded properties
85% being pushed into poverty after paying their rent.

People are living in conditions of the sort reported on by Engels in the 19th century. They are paying rent to speculator landlords. There is squalor and overcrowding as well as constant threat of eviction.
The most striking thing is the complete inability of people to do anything about their predicament.
20 years ago there was a chance you could get into social housing. But now there is very little hope.
Welfare reforms have driven housing benefit and the housing element of UC below the level of the cheapest private rents in the entire country except for a tiny amount of areas.
Poor renters are likely to be living with damp, disrepair and dangerous hazards.
They cannot vote with their feet because they can’t afford anything better.

Research based on data from Dept. Housing etc.
Observer 14/04 /19

Whitewavemark2 Sun 14-Apr-19 09:35:03

In 2018 Philip Alston, the Special UN rapporteur on extreme poverty and human rights reported that the U.K. governments’ cuts to benefits and social support, were entrenching high levels of poverty and inflicting unnecessary misery , driven by the ideological desire to undertake social re-engineering, rather than good social policies.

Unsurprisingly the Tory government rejected this damning report.
Well they would wouldn’t they?

Another report by Bristol University which looked at three activities or items deemed necessary for life in the U.K. in 2014 showed that the proportion of households lacking these necessities had risen to 33%.

Urmstongran Sun 14-Apr-19 09:42:15

It’s truly shocking.

I’m appalled when landlord and business owners exploit their tenants/employees. How can they sleep at night when they wouldn’t like a member of their own family to live/work in such awful conditions? Where is their humanity? Exchanged for money in the bank I suppose.

Chucky Sun 14-Apr-19 09:52:19

Yet despite this we are expected to take our share of immigrants every year, who will occupy the houses that could be given to our own homeless and those who live in squalor or poor rental conditions.

quizqueen Sun 14-Apr-19 10:07:07

Too right, Chucky. If there were 10-20 million fewer people in this country, there would be enough housing for our own citizens. I'm not a Tory, but they have built more housing than Labour ever did under Blair. Also, Mr Wilson, when Prime Minister, closed down more mines than Mrs Thatcher did but it's always the Tories who get bashed for that too!
re benefits, I don't know why anyone should expect to receive any hand-outs from the government or produce more children than they can afford to feed and house themselves, funded by other working tax payers, of course. People should make their own way in life.

Anniebach Sun 14-Apr-19 10:23:09

We fear mentioning immigration because of accusations of racism

mostlyharmless Sun 14-Apr-19 10:40:37

According to figures compiled by the House of Commons Library, an average of 127,000 homes a year have been built in England and Wales since the Tories took office in 2010. This is the lowest level since Baldwin's first stint as Prime Minister in 1923, when just 86,000 homes were built.9 May 2017.

mostlyharmless Sun 14-Apr-19 10:42:08


Migrants from the EU contribute £2,300 more to the exchequer each year in net terms than the average adult, the analysis for the government has found.

And, over their lifetimes, they pay in £78,000 more than they take out in public services and benefits - while the average UK citizen’s net lifetime contribution is zero.

From The Independent

Grandad1943 Sun 14-Apr-19 10:47:52

Anniebach Quote [ We fear mentioning immigration because of accusations of racism] End Quote.

Yes, and as we have all learned in the last three years we very much need those immigrants to run or health service, harvest our crops, drive our buses and trucks and much else in our service industries.

The simple solution to bringing an end to the housing crisis would be to build far more social housing, preferably under local Council control.

However, this Tory government would rather pander to the private rented sector, placing private profit before the welfare of working people once again.

Whitewavemark2 Sun 14-Apr-19 10:56:57

How does this poverty affect the most vulnerable in our society?

Children and education. Survey by NEU with 8600 educational staff taking part.

Teachers are reporting worsening signs of child poverty in our classrooms.
Children are arriving at school, tired, hungry, angry and confused.
Many arrive wearing ill fitting and dirty uniforms with behavioural issues and anxiety that affects their learning.
Many of the school staff provided food for the students and personal products from their own pocket. Many also washed and paid for school uniforms.
Most teaching staff saw the food banks as an every day necessity for these children.

The affects of poverty on the learning process for these vulnerable children.
78% suffer from fatigue
76% had poor concentration
75% poor behaviour
57% experience hunger
50% suffer Ill health.
35% are bullied.

Some students arrive without dinner money and say that they haven’t eaten for 2 days.
Many children are brought to school when they are too unwell to attend, because their parents are on zero hours contracts and too frightened to take time off.
Overcrowding at home in slum style housing means there is not enough space to do homework and poor sleeping patterns are endured.

Nadhim Zaharia, responded by the usual mantra.
Tackling disadvantage and poverty is a priority for the government. Employment is at the highest and wages outstripping growth.

As usual they miss the point.

Whitewavemark2 Sun 14-Apr-19 11:03:39

Please don’t confuse poverty with immigration. They are two entirely different issues.

Grandad1943 Sun 14-Apr-19 11:16:51

The welfare of this nations children would appear to be of little interest to this Tory government.

It is reported in the media today that only 15% of schools opened in recent years have sprinkler systems fitted. Once again, austerity is more important than the safety of this nations children

The lessons of Grenfell Tower are being deliberately ignored.

Link to the above report can be found here:-

Whitewavemark2 Sun 14-Apr-19 11:35:03

There is little optimism that this situation is likely to improve, indeed things are set to get worse. Please note I have not looked at the effect of a no deal brexit will have on the poorly paid.

1 in 5 working people in the UK are (5.4 million) are low paid.
1 in 4 individuals get less than the living wage.
The U.K. sits at the wrong end of the low pay table. Examples of better paid are Belgium where poor are paid 7 times as high, and Switzerland, twice as high.
There is some optimism in that it is calculated that as a result of the National minimum wage. It is estimated that by 2020 there should be 1 million less on low wages.
However, positive though the NMW appears it is likely to sharpen the challenge of pay progression for low paid workers. The effect will be to group the lowest paid workers on the pay floor.
Analysis shows that the number of low paid workers on the pay floor will rise from 6% in 2015, to an unprecedented 15% in 2020.

Resolution Foundation.

Urmstongran Sun 14-Apr-19 11:37:48

Message deleted by Gransnet. Here's a link to our Talk Guidelines.

maryeliza54 Sun 14-Apr-19 11:39:52

quizqueen you’d advocate euthanasia for disabled people then who couldn’t ‘make their own way’. You know which last populist extreme racist leader did that? I believe he used gas

Whitewavemark2 Sun 14-Apr-19 11:48:35

I haven’t addressed the likely affects of Brexit on poverty, but an article in the BMJ is interesting.

Anniebach Sun 14-Apr-19 11:50:30

Really grandad1943, the welfare of 116 children was of no interest to a labour government. Surely you will be supportive if ‘lessons will be learned ‘ following the Grenfell tower ‘event’.

Anniebach Sun 14-Apr-19 11:52:09

Poverty and immigration are not linked , housing shortages can be linked

Whitewavemark2 Sun 14-Apr-19 12:12:06

annie perhaps the alleged link between immigration and housing shortage is for another thread?

Anniebach Sun 14-Apr-19 12:14:43

They cannot be separated

Whitewavemark2 Sun 14-Apr-19 12:15:53

As you wish annie

Joelsnan Sun 14-Apr-19 12:17:06

Yes, and as we have all learned in the last three years we very much need those immigrants to run or health service, harvest our crops, drive our buses and trucks and much else in our service industries

What did we do pre Maastricht enabling free movement?

annabelindajane Sun 14-Apr-19 12:30:53

White wave 2 - what’s your solution?

Grandad1943 Sun 14-Apr-19 12:44:18

Joelsnan Quote [Grandad1943, What did we do pre Maastricht enabling free movement?] End Quote.

Joelsnan, pre-Maastricht Britain Britain had a much smaller economy and immigration was prior to that time filled by people migrating to the UK from mainly Asian countries.

However the Benefits of EU membership and other factors has meant the British economy has expanded over the years since Maastricht and immigration from EU countries has very much filled the need since that treaty signing for people to run or health service, harvest our crops, drive our buses and trucks and much else in our service industries.

I for one am thankful that those migrants are here.

Joelsnan Sun 14-Apr-19 12:48:19

Of course housing shartages have to be linked to immigration especially when the 'indigenous' population is declining as is the case in UK, yet the need for housing and infrastructure is rising. Actual immigration and increasing birthrate by immgrants is bound to impact. Maybe this is a good thing as their labour is needed, but surely on a small group of island there becomes a saturation point. Its interesting to look at the population levels in the much larger countries of Europe, in many cases their economies are doing okay with fewer people per France has a similar size population to UK and is much, much bigger.