The Poverty Alliance has responded today to the initial findings of the UN Special Rapporteur’s inquiry into poverty in the UK, with a call for renewed action to address rising poverty rates.
The findings lay bare the impact of the decision to implement austerity policies – and particularly the impact of cuts to social security – with the Rapporteur highlighting the devastating effect of policies like the benefits freeze, the sanctions regime, and Universal Credit.
With 1 million people in Scotland – including 1 in 4 children – now living in poverty in Scotland, the Poverty Alliance have responded by urging all decision-makers to heed the words of the Rapporteur and get behind the changes that can solve poverty.
Peter Kelly, Director of the Poverty Alliance, said:
“As the Rapporteur’s findings make clear, decisions taken in recent years about our society’s priorities and resources have tightened the grip of poverty on people’s lives.
We have seen poverty increasing for the first time in decades; a direct result of the choices that have been made. These choices have – as the Rapporteur makes clear – had a disproportionate impact on women, children, disabled people, people from minority ethnic backgrounds, and lone parents.
The state of denial about the impact of the decisions that have been taken cannot go on. We all share a moral responsibility to respond to these findings by taking the steps needed to free people from the grip of poverty, and ensure that everyone has a decent standard of living.”
You can read the Poverty Alliance’s written submission to the Rapporteur here.