Divided Britain – The Impact of Rising Inequality

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Lecture date: Sun, 28th Jun, 2015
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Poverty in Britain is at post-war highs and – even with economic growth – is set to increase yet further.  Food bank queues are growing, levels of severe deprivation have been rising, and increasing numbers of children are left with their most basic needs unmet.

Based on exclusive access to the largest ever survey of poverty in the UK, and its predecessor surveys in the 1980s and 1990s, Stewart Lansley and Joanna Mack (in their book Breadline Britain) track changes in deprivation and paint a devastating picture of the reality of poverty today and its causes. Shattering the myth that poverty is the fault of the poor and a generous benefit system, they show that the blame lies with the massive social and economic upheaval that has shifted power from the workforce to corporations and swelled the ranks of the working poor, a group increasingly at the mercy of low-pay, zero-hour contracts and downward social mobility.

In this talk Stewart Lansley will take us through the critical factors that have lead us to this parlous state, with following discussions on possible resolutions.

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Stewart Lansley is an economist and financial journalist. He has written extensively on poverty, wealth and inequality for specialist journals as well as the Guardian, the Independent and the Observer. He and Joanna Mack are both former award-winning television producers, and have collaborated on research and television programmes about poverty over the last thirty years.