Liberal Reforms 1906-1912

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Prior to the late 19th century ‘Laissez-faire’ was the Governments policy towards poverty in Britain. “Laissez-faire” meaning to leave alone was the attitude of both the government and the public towards the issue of the poor who were living in poverty. The state was not to interfere in the lives of people or in the workings of market economy. Individuals had to look after themselves and their families. It was believed that poverty was the individuals own fault, due to their own personal defects and moral failures. The poor were treated like inferior criminals. There crime being poverty. Norman Pearson who was voice on the topic at this time believed poor people living in poverty were “seldom capable of reform”, they tended to be “made of inferior materials… and cannot be improved” and the poor should be prevented from breading as the poor were poor “in their blood and their bones”. People became concerned about the percentage of the poor living in poverty and the extent of poverty in which they were living. And so a series of investigations into poverty in Britain were carried out. Research showed that most people could not help themselves get out of poverty due to contributing factors. Therefore the argument arose that the state government should have a greater role in helping those living in poverty - this put pressure on the government. New reforms were introduced in an attempt to solve the problems associated with Britain’s poverty such as National Security, National Efficiency, Social Awareness, New Liberalism and Municipal Socialism. These social reforms would help those living in poverty and overall benefit the well-being and health of people living in Britain. As a result of the increasing concerns investigations were carried out into Britain‘s poverty levels at the end of the 19th century. These investigations revealed the true levels of poverty in
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