The welfare reforms present a particular challenge to the financial security and autonomy of women. The “reforms” have been strongly influenced by (a particular form of) economic modelling, and do not take into account the lived experiences or the impact of the cuts on those targeted. Conservative ideology also informs the reforms and the Government uses an out-of-date model of households and concern about “dependency” on the state, not within families. The form of modelling depopulates social policy, dehumanises people, and indicates that the Tory policy-makers see the public as objects of their policies, and not as human subjects.
We therefore need to ask whose needs the “reforms” are fulfilling.
In 2010 the Equality and Human Rights Commission warned the government about its potential failure to meet its legal duties. This followed concerns raised by the Fawcett Society and others, regarding the estimated grossly disproportionate impact of the austerity cuts on women. The…
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