• The disgrace of inequality

    DSC_0021Inequality is bad for us all. Having wide discrepancies in people’s wealth is not only socially divisive and, emotionally and intellectually debilitating, it is also economically catastrophic. No society can sustain such a massive gap between the richest and poorest.

    Sadly, today there is yet more depressing evidence that the Coalition’s Austerity budgets have created a massive increase in inequality in the UK.

    We already know that average household incomes are still declining and that a record number of working families are in poverty.

    Today’s report by the Joseph Rowntree Foundation describes how 8.1m parents and children don’t have the incomes they need. The study says that the number of families with children on inadequate incomes rose by more than the between 2008 and 2013.

    The Foundation describes it as “income stagnation” – it is known as hardship and poverty to you and me.

    Of course the daily reality of inequality is a long way from the corridors of Westminster. This is how the government responded to the Joseph Rowntree Foundation report:

    “UK income inequality is now lower than when this government came into office and the recovery is being felt across the country.”

    The Coalition is utterly divorced from ordinary lives.

    Austerity isn’t working.

    Cuts to our public services aren’t working.

    If there was ever a desperate need for change it is now.