The welfare state exists because without it the
modern world goes to hell - for everybody
All of the elements of the welfare state were built by
community: trade unions, local councils, co-ops,
churches and local associations
It took years of pressure, conﬂict and creativity to
build the welfare state.
The modern world is so much wealthier that
people no longer need a collective welfare
system - we can all just look after ourselves.
The modern world is even more insecure than the
world of the 1940s.
Older structures: the ﬁrm, the family, the
community, the church are even weaker today than
they were in in the 1940s.
Economic wealth has only been created at the
cost of growing insecurity and the instability of the
We can trust democratic governments to work
hard to ensure that the welfare state works well
and beneﬁts those who are most disadvantaged.
Central governments and large private
organisations are incompetent at taking care of
citizens, families or communities.
Party politics focuses on the swing voters and the
inﬂuential and powerful.
Big systems increasingly serve the interests of
those who run them - managers, share owners,
if you don’t believe this
here are some facts and
The current system is a complex net of taxes and beneﬁts
that nobody understands but which leaves people fearful.
The real cost of beneﬁts - after tax is very low indeed - most
of the money goes on salaries
The poorest 10% of families pay the highest share of any
group income in taxes - about 45%.
There are only a tiny number of people who do not work for
years - the vast majority of people go out and look for work.
The current crisis has nothing to do with public expenditure
- which has hardly changed over the last 40 years.
The real cause of the crisis was a collapse in banks who had
invested in an enormous unsustainable housing bubble.
To protect homeowners the government slashed the cost of
borrowing - creating a huge subsidy.
Government is now subsiding the mortgages of homeowners
at a cost of over £34 billion per year.
The government has targeted cuts that fall hardest on those
with the greatest needs - people with severe disabilities.
The cuts fall on people with disabilities and people in poverty
far harder than they fall on any other groups.
We can trust government to take care of
those who are most disadvantaged.
Increasingly politicians are encouraging stigma blaming the poor for poverty.
People are looking for scapegoats - innocent
victims who we can blame for our own errors.
It is the groups who can least stick up for
themselves that are getting the most stick.
The government’s planned welfare reforms
will make things better.
Child Beneﬁt freeze
Abolition of Sure Start Maternity for second and
Change to CPI indexation of beneﬁts
Reductions in support for carers
Replacing DLA with PIP
Child Beneﬁt clawback from higher rate
Time-limiting of contributory ESA
Transfer of Social Fund to local government
Council Tax Beneﬁt – 10% reduction and
Extension of JSA lone parents with a youngest
child aged 5-6
Housing Beneﬁt cuts
Household Beneﬁt cap
Abolition of the Independent Living Fund
Continued use of ATOS or others
Reductions in ‘Access to Work’ funding
Closure of Remploy services
Abolition of the Child Trust Fund
Tax credit changes
Abolition of the Health in Pregnancy Grant
Abolition of the Child Trust Fund
Abolition of the ESA youth rules
The UK is the third most unequal developed
country and getting more unequal.
The UK is the second most centralised welfare
state and getting more centralised.
Per person the UK is the most indebted developed
country in the world.
We fell asleep. We forgot that they don’t take care
of us, we take care of each other. We forgot that it’s
the rich who need the poor, not the poor who need
the rich. We forgot that politicians work for us, we
don’t work for them. We forgot that government
doesn’t innovate, people do. We forgot that
government doesn’t create wealth, people do. We
forgot that government doesn’t know best, people
do. We forgot about citizenship, we forgot about
families, we forgot about community. We confused
good with big. We confused achievement with
wealth. We confused love with control. We forgot
that the welfare state was made by us, that it
belongs to us and it needs to work for us. It’s time
to wake up.