The law brought positive changes to the country encouraging more people to seek employment, “working people developed their own self-help movement”. Walsh M, et al, 2000. But also created some negative changes, working conditions were extremely harsh and families were split up. The amendment act was disliked by the poor population of the country because of the leissez-faire system the government had in place, the government’s approach on leissez-faire was to intervene as little as possible with the direction of economic affairs. This had an impact on the poor, it caused stigma and the poor had a mark of disgrace on their reputation.
Women were another vulnerable group because they were always paid at a lower rate than men. There was no safety net for people who fell into poverty other than resorting to the ‘workhouse’ which had been established to deal with cases of extreme poverty in Trade unions had little power as the Taff Vale Incident of 1901 showed and Friendly Societies could only provide a limited amount of help. Attitudes to poverty in the early 20th century were quite unsympathetic many politicians from both the Liberal and Conservative party felt that poverty came from personal laziness. Both parties had an attitude of “laissez-faire” i.e. non interference from the government.
This was because there was a commonly held belief that the deprived were responsible for there poor living conditions, as they did not work hard enough – like the upper-class did, some would argue. Yet, the Liberals did pass reforms between 1906 and 1914 in order to tackle this problem. For example, the Old Age Pension Act of 1908 and Education (Provision of Meals) Act of 1906. Two social surveys were published during this time, that not only shocked the British public but changed popular opinion on the causes of poverty. They helped pave the way for a whole range of Government-led welfare reforms.
The poor suffered powerlessness because they were poor, therefore they were placed at the bottom of the social ladder. They were automatically placed at the bottom of the social ladder and were referred to as “sinners” because they were uneducated and poor. They were led to believe that they were inferior and were possessed like property that could be acquired, used , and disposed of the politics of the moment required. 3. Would you describe this society as a power-over or power-with society?
Sociologists explain poverty in a number of different ways. Some sociological explanations of poverty say that the problem is with the attitudes and values of the poor, while other explanations say that the problem is with society and the economy. One explanation of poverty is the culture of poverty, which refers to the attitudes and values that people in poverty have. Poor people think that they can't change their situation and will always be poor, so they tend not to aim high and don’t make sacrifices as they feel that they won't achieve much. They also live for the moment (present gratification).
Why poverty will always be party of the British Society? In this essay will analyse and assess why poverty will always be part of the British society, referencing to the past and present policies put in place to tackle and lessen poverty. Poverty is one of the most spoken about subject in the current social issues, by politicians, media and charity organisations. Poverty is a controversial subject as different people define it according to their understanding. In social science poverty is defined in two ways; absolute poverty concept based on lack of fulfilment of basic human needs such as food shelter, clothing and other things redeemed essential Giddens(2006, p342); and relative poverty describes inequality or a gap in people’s incomes and accepted standard of living.
During 1906 to 1914 the Liberals passed reforms to try and improve the lives of the British people. Booth and Rowntree impacted the way people viewed the poor, they conducted a report which identified two areas of poor. Primary poverty was due to low wage, unemployment, sickness and old age. And secondary poverty was the source of laziness and citizens wasting money by spending it on drink and gambling. When the report was released, people began to see the true extent of poverty and that the British people couldn’t fulfil their basic needs and provide for themselves food, water, clothing and shelter.
Voter participation was plummeting due to the new poll taxes and literacy tests that were keeping the poor out of the voting booth. The progressive movement was an attempt to control the government through reform and provide protection to all classes’ welfare. Reform was not limited to the middle and lower classes; there were some upper class such as Alexander Cassatt, who was in charge of the Pennsylvania Railroad, that were supporters of regulation and political
Saying that, “failure to address these issues not only hurts these workers’ families, it erodes the functioning of America’s communities, its economy and our very notions of what democracy can achieve (Fairness Initiative).” Also, although food stamps are supposed to be there to help working poor families, it still in the end leads to further erode in their economic well-being. So in dealing with all these issues, many working poor families are left stressed. The fact of these families living in poverty is enough, but also the fact that children have to endure these conditions in poverty is unbearable. “. .
Children growing up in poverty face many disadvantages such as unhealthy levels of stress making it near impossible to successfully complete college, thus making it harder to escape their surroundings. The poverty rates in some European countries are much lower than in the United States because of programs they have put into place to help the poor and unlucky, leading one to think the government should once again re-declare the war on poverty. Krugman’s article not only shows percentages he also lets his readers know what the findings were from scientific studies. Living in the conditions of poverty is stressful for anyone, much less children. I see the effects that poverty has on many people every day, and always think one day that could be me.