Do You Agree with the View That the Old Poor Law Was Inefficient, Expensive and Unfair? Essay

1163 WordsJan 13, 20155 Pages
I believe that the old poor law could be seen as being inefficient, expensive and unfair rot a degree when considering the criticisms and faults to do with the law. In my opinion the criticisms portray these views in many ways and in this essay I will be exploring how these factors support this view. The old poor law had many aspects that could have been seen as inefficient. One main one being that by offering families more money based upon the amount of children they owned in many cases meant that they would give birth to more that they couldn't necessarily afford. Bigger families were given larger sums of relief to try and cater for all the children. This more or less meant that there wasn't a reason to stop having children for some people as it allowed them to have a larger sum of disposable income. Also from this a lot of people got the same idea, meaning that between 1801-1818 the poor rate doubled, meaning that more people and families were counting on being provided for from the poor rate. However when the poor law that was passed in 1834 that involved not giving out relief without being in exceptional circumstances which in this case was going into a workhouse. In the old poor law going into a work house was for the able bodied poor and outdoor relief was for the incompetent poor, the amount of money being given out was tried to be minimised. It was also seen as being inefficient as people such as Thomas Malthus and David Ricardo noticed that many people became too reliant upon the poor law and handouts, they started to lose independence and didn't see the point in working hard when they could just receive money from the poor rate system. If people didn't receive enough money in their wages to cover the costs for basic needs such as food, their wages would be 'topped' up, allowing them to be able to afford the necessities. However in some ways the way in
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