Rent regulation, common in Europe and many states of the USA is now urgently needed across the UK.

Danny Dorling In 1988 housing rent controls abolished. In 2016 inequalities & poverty get bigger & bigger

……………..”The catastrophe of rising inequality and poverty can be traced to the abolition of rent controls, the deregulation of lending and the flood of national and international speculation into a UK housing market in short supply[1]. That was done by the 1979 government. The 1997 government let it rip. The 2015 government financed an increase in the value of property to win votes until the change of Prime Minister in 2016 when the U-turns began. Rent regulation, common in Europe and many states of the USA is now urgently needed across the UK.

There is now a severe housing crisis in the UK.  Taxpayers Against Poverty has called for an immediate rent freeze for a year in all sectors private, registered social landlords and councils, while rent regulations are brought in.”……

Read more on the Taxpayers against Poverty site here

Minimum-wage families would be £2,038 a year richer if George Osborne’s Budget had never happened

Research for MPs shows the devastating toll of two key welfare cuts on minimum-wage workers – even after they’re paid the ‘national living wage’

Britain’s poorest working families would be £2,000 richer if three of George Osborne’s key Budget changes had never happened, shock figures reveal. Research for MPs shows the devastating toll of the Chancellor’s welfare cuts on minimum-wage workers – even after they’re paid the ‘national living wage’.

The new rate of up to £9 an hour, which begins for over-25s in April, will boost family finances by £1,427 a year by 2021. But cutting tax credits and freezing child benefit will cost those same families £3,465, leaving them £2,038 worse off overall.

The horrifying figures punch a hole in David Cameron’s election pledge to help ‘hard-working people’ and pull people off the benefits ‘merry-go-round’.

The research was compiled by the House of Commons library.

Read more here: http://www.mirror.co.uk/news/uk-news/minimum-wage-families-would-2038-6441878?ICID

Top doctor: social inequality in UK costing 550 lives every day

Sir Michael Marmot, soon to be president of World Medical Association, says hundreds of thousands are dying

More than 200,000 people in the UK are dying prematurely because of social inequalities that risk becoming entrenched, a top doctor has said.

Sir Michael Marmot, who had advised the coalition on the link between health and wealth, warned that research revealed a stark “social gradient” emerging in Britain. The poor not only die on average seven years sooner than the rich, but they can expect to face becoming disabled 17 years earlier. The middle classes in the country had life expectancies of eight years less than the very richest.

However, it was in the field of education where Marmot said the research vividly showed how unfair life was becoming. “If everybody had the same mortality of those with a university education, then [each year] we could prevent 202,000 premature deaths. “If this was caused by a pollutant, there would be people on the streets saying ‘stop it now’. The irony is that the cause is pin-pointable. It is the inequalities in the conditions [in which] we are born, grow, live, work and age, and it’s damaging the health of us all. It is costing us 550 lives a day in the UK alone.”

In his new book, The Health Gap, he argues that those who blame lifestyles miss the point. “Over 30 years, smoking levels have declined while obesity has soared. Have we become more responsible when it comes to smoking and less responsible when it comes to obesity. No.”

There is little doubt that inequality has become a feature of British life. Since 1980, the share of total income received by the top one per cent of Britain has almost doubled, to about 13% in 2011, reversing a three-decades-long trend towards greater equality.

This when, the academic pointed out, the Joseph Rowntree Foundation found at least 8.1 million parents and children living on incomes below what is needed to cover a minimum household budget, up by more than a third from 5.9 million in 2009.

Marmot, who is about to become president of the World Medical Association, criticised the “austerity agenda” of many politicians, saying that the Office of Budget Responsibility had pointed out it had cut 5% from GDP. He warned that a proposed £200m cut to public health budgets at such a time was a “very bad thing”. He also questioned the government’s plans to raise the pension age past 66 and link it to life expectancy.

Recent data showed the average age to which people could expect to remain in good health was around 64 for men and 66 for women. Sir Michael pointed out that average life expectancy figures mask a 16-year variation between those in the best- and worst-off neighbourhoods. By the age of 68, nearly two-thirds of people in England had a disability that could make it difficult to stay in work.

Read more here: http://www.theguardian.com/society/2015/sep/10/doctor-social-inequality-uk-550-lives-every-day

Benefits for people in work cost 6 times as much as for people out of work

Benefits for people in work cost 6 times as much as for people out of work

 
So, the Tories won and the election, worse still from out point of view, with an outright majority. We were told before the election that the Tories planned to make £12bn of welfare cuts. IDS refused to tell us what the Tories had in mind. Various ideas were floated and leaked to the press.
Before the election, the Tories announced that they would be freezing benefits for working age people for 2 years. That saves £1bn. They have now announced plans to reduce the Benefit Cap from £26,000 to £23,000. This does not apply to any claimants who receive Working Tax Credits or a disability benefit. This change will save about £100m a year, half a billion over the five years of a Parliament. Half a billion is not insignificant but it is a drop in the ocean set against a deficit which was £90bn last year. And our total national debt is roughly £1.5tn.
Reducing the cap is likely to lead to more evictions as people can no longer afford their rent, especially in London and the South East. Policy advice from civil servants to the Government, states that this measure will plunge another 40,000 children into poverty.
Tories continue to hammer away at claimants who are not in work, as they know that plays well to their base. I believe that the public are not aware of the relatively small sums of public money that we are talking about.
Its an easy mistake to make. You would assume that getting more people into work would mean that the nation saves money. But you would be wrong. Tax credits for people in work, cost 6 times as much as job seekers allowance pad to those out of work.

Temporary and part-time jobs surge promotes inequality, says OECD

DWPExamination.

THE GUARDIAN

In the UK, non-standard work including zero-hours contracts accounted for all net jobs growth since 1995

Striking workers at the Hovis bakery in Wigan in August 2013.

A surge in self-employment and temporary or part-time jobs over the past two decades has been a key factor behind the rise in inequality in the world’s industrialised countries, according to a major new study by the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development.

The Paris-based club, which has been a driving force in arguing that increasing inequality jeopardises economic growth, says more than half of all job creation in its 34 member countries since the mid-1990s has been in “non-standard work”, which accounts for about a third of total employment.

With such jobs tending to be lower-paid and less secure than their full-time, permanent equivalents, some economists have described this phenomenon as the rise of a “precariat” – and the OECD says the growing prevalence of non-standard work has widened wage…

View original post 3 more words

There is great poverty in this country, but there are also great riches

Wages for most people have fallen over the past five years, meaning that work is no longer a guaranteed route out of poverty.
 Here’s the latest infographic from http://inequalitybriefing.org/
More than half of the UK households in poverty contain someone in work. But many at the top have not had to economise. The number of UK billionaires has grown rapidly, as has pay for top company bosses.
There is great poverty in this country, but there are also great riches.