Impact of inequality dartington


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Impact of inequality dartington

  1. 1. IMPACT OF INEQUALITY Some facts and ideas
  2. 2. ANATOMY OF UK INEQUALITY <ul><li>Two nations or maybe three? - Super-rich, alienated middle, disenfranchised below that </li></ul><ul><li>Poorest have got poorer </li></ul><ul><li>Entrenched and persistent social exclusion </li></ul><ul><li>High levels of distrust especially towards the state and big business </li></ul><ul><li>History of treating symptoms, not causes </li></ul>
  3. 3. INCOME & WEALTH INEQUALITY <ul><li>Income – see tables at end </li></ul><ul><li>Wealth – </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Richest 1% own 25% of UK wealth </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Top 50% own 91% of UK wealth </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>The bottom 10% are in debt </li></ul></ul>
  4. 4. HEALTH INEQUALITY <ul><li>In poorest neighbourhoods, people die on average 7 years earlier than in richest </li></ul><ul><li>Average disability-free life expectancy – 17 years difference </li></ul><ul><li>Influenced by differences in: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Smoking, diet, obesity, alcohol and drug use, patterns of exercise </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Level of medical care </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Child development factors – parental depression, being played with and read to, bedtimes </li></ul></ul><ul><li>But effects of stress still exist when you equalise all of these – affects all but the very richest </li></ul>
  5. 5. EST. COST TO SOCIETY OF MORTALITY & MORBIDITY <ul><li>Productivity loss - £31 - £33Bn p.a. in taxes </li></ul><ul><li>Higher benefit payments - £20 - £32Bn p.a. </li></ul><ul><li>Additional NHS costs – over £5.5Bn </li></ul>
  6. 6. EDUCATIONAL INEQUALITY <ul><li>Only 32% of children with routine job parents get 5 A-C grade GCSEs (Higher prof – 77%) </li></ul><ul><li>22% of employers unwilling to consider employing jobseekers with less </li></ul><ul><li>A persistent 13-14% get less than this at any grade </li></ul><ul><li>Those with lowest achievements are more likely to be - male, poor, single-parent, many siblings, free school meals, truants </li></ul>
  7. 7. GENDER, DISABILITY, ETHNICITY <ul><li>All to some extent linked with unequal school attainment – for instance: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Girls already doing far better in school by 5 years. Curriculum seems to favour them </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Four fifths of young people with special needs have been bullied & bullying strongly affects attainment </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Cultural context affects achievement - some ethnic groupings vastly underachieve: others over-achieve compared with average </li></ul></ul>
  8. 8. EDUCATIONAL IMPACT <ul><li>Unemployment linked to poorer health (mental and physical), higher mortality </li></ul><ul><li>Poorer types of employment lead to low pay, unhealthy conditions, insecurity, stressful conditions, less control </li></ul><ul><li>Therefore societal costs/ opportunity costs: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Lost productivity + health effects + “problems” in society </li></ul></ul>
  9. 9. For instance - PRISON POPULATIONS & SELF-REPORTED CRIMINALITY <ul><li>Correlations with: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Male, unemployment, low income, low educational achievement, ethnic minority, strained family relations, drugs and heavy drinking, mental health history, friends & family involved with police, truancy, habit of bullying others </li></ul></ul>
  10. 10. HOW DOES INEQUALITY WORK? <ul><li>Many inter-related factors create self- reinforcement and hard-to-break patterns </li></ul><ul><li>Seem to be strong correlations between high levels of inequality and low levels of social capital and trust – everyone feels the stress </li></ul><ul><li>Greater inequality appears to create overall worse outcomes for the whole of a society. There are costs to almost everyone in terms of stress, violence, social costs, worse comparisons with more equal societies on all fronts </li></ul>
  11. 11. WHAT’S BEHIND STRESS? <ul><li>Consumerism and celebrity culture </li></ul><ul><li>Choice – (A luxury of the wealthy?) </li></ul><ul><li>Self-interest leads to competitive, stress-inducing behaviour, leads to stress hormones </li></ul><ul><li>Social divisions rigid - segregation, antagonistism, anger, victimhood </li></ul><ul><li>Stress in growing proportion as the rich move up and popular culture reveals their life-styles </li></ul>
  12. 12. POSSIBLE ALTERNATIVES FOR INTERVENTION <ul><li>Direct versus indirect? “Obliquity” – financial rewards and happiness as by-products of actions that benefit others </li></ul><ul><li>Linking social capital (between social groups) versus bonding social capital (within groups) </li></ul><ul><li>Bottom-up versus top-down </li></ul><ul><li>Small pots locally versus big programmes nationally </li></ul><ul><li>Broadening or changing roles of professionals & institutions – recognise interconnections </li></ul>
  13. 13. CITIZENS’ ROLE IN SOCIETY Impact of different groups <ul><li>Level of Capability </li></ul><ul><li>Education </li></ul><ul><li>Buying power </li></ul><ul><li>Resourceful-ness </li></ul>High Low Low High Degree of Willingness to make contribution to wider society DISENGAGED OR DISENFRANCHISED Net cost to society or fall through cracks CAPABLE INDIVIDUALISTS Impact neutral – little cost to society, but little contribution WILLING & ACTIVE CITIZENS Net contributors WILLING BUT NOT ACTIVE Potential resource – realised the problems, want to help solve them
  14. 14. FACTORS INFLUENCING ROLE SHIFT Scope for action Capability Education Buying power Resourceful-ness High Low Low High Willingness DISENGAGED Net cost to society or fall through cracks CAPABLE INDIVIDUALISTS Impact neutral WILLING & ACTIVE CITIZENS Net contributors WILLING BUT NOT ENGAGED Potential resource Moment of truth through catalytic events, professionals and local community leaders SSE & other Bottom up Initiatives - learning, reflection & experimentation, supported by facilitation and small investments Inducements - self-interest Reinforcement Arrows show scope for movement
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