17% of UK households don’t work, 5M Brits haven’t worked since ’97

Posted on August 26, 2009

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From the Daily Mail comes a set of shocking statistics out of Great Britain that show 16.9% of households have no adult with a job, the highest rate since 1999. What’s more, the Daily Mail’s analysis says 5 million Brits haven’t worked at all since the Labour government took power in 1997. More depressing numbers include the 40% of single parent families that  are “workless” and the 65% of Brits on sickness benefit who are thought to be fit to work. The biggest shock is the 7.89 million Brits classed as “economically inactive” who aren’t working and aren’t planning to do so.

Both the article and the opposition Tory party are putting the blame on entitlement and welfare programs that give people little incentive to work. The global recession undoubtedly is a factor, but it’s hard to come up with another reason to explain the nearly 8 million Englishmen, which is 12.9% of the UK’s population of 60.1 million, who refuse to get a job. The entitlements of the welfare state are illustrated by the article’s example of the Crompton family, who live in a seven-bedroom home and receive almost £33,000 a year in benefits.

I don’t know if you can find a more glaring example of the pitfalls of unfettered government welfare. It’s a reminder that the entitlement mentality ends up creating a massive drag on society as scores of the able-bodied realize there’s no need for them to work. Societal safety nets are one thing – perpetuation of poverty through welfare is quite another.
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Posted in: News, Politics