02 What are the dimensions of inequality.doc

02 What are the dimensions of inequality.doc - Social...

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Social Inequality Unit 02 What are the dimensions of inequality? Learning targets: Certain people are more vulnerable to poverty than others People who are vulnerable to long term poverty are generally working class, members of ethnic minorities and those who are dependent on benefits to survive. There are various explanations for why poverty exists in our society. People who are poor find it difficult to escape poverty and pass on poverty to their chil- dren. Key questions (AO1) Who is most vulnerable to poverty in the UK? (AO1) Is it possible to escape from poverty? (AO2) What reasons are there for the inequality that some social groups experience? (AO2) Is poverty a social problem in Britain? 1 | P a g e
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Summary of Key Points Who is poor and unequal? The people who experience inequality in our society are those who are vulnerable through poverty, poor education, low paid work, reliance on benefits and those living in poor areas. These people tend to be members of some ethnic minorities, people living in post industrial areas, women, children and the elderly and disabled. Generally, people in the UK are very much better off than they were even 40 years ago on a whole range of measures. Their homes are of a better standard and they have access to material goods and possessions that did not exist previously. Average household incomes have improved but the benefit of this improved wealth is not equal through the population. There are still many people who live in inadequate and unpleasant conditions and who have to do without basic necessities. Robert Walker (1998) identified three types of poverty that people in UK could experience. Transient poverty is when people experience poverty for a short time in their life cycle. Stu- dents can expect to be poor, but after graduation, they will have access to high paid work. Some people drift in and out of poverty throughout their lives, perhaps because they do not have secure jobs or work on short contracts. This is known as recurrent poverty. Permanent or persistent poverty is when people are always poor. These people probably rely on benefits all through their lives because they are disabled or otherwise unable to ob- tain work. We also know that poverty is generally a working class experience. People who are poor tend to be those who have few skills and who come from poor areas and poor families. Max Weber says this is because working class people have few skills that they can offer in the job market and they cannot demand high wages for their time. Karl Marx lays the blame for poverty on capitalism. New Right theorists blame the welfare state for poverty, claiming that because we have an over generous welfare state and benefits, people have no incentive to work.
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  • Fall '17
  • Poverty, Household income in the United States, Child Poverty Action Group

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