For whose benefit?

I know I’ve had a go here at people on benefits, but that’s only when they deserve it.

There seems to be a huge flood of anti-‘mums on benefit’ feelings, rants and outcries deluging all manner of blogs, newspapers and even the hallowed environs of Parliament at the moment in the wake of the Baby P and Shannon Matthews cases.

It also seems to be inspired by the current economic downturn, which is ironic, given that we’re likely to see more people on benefit and those people chasing fewer and fewer jobs. It’s all very well saying, ‘Get off benefit and get a job!’

(I know, I said it myself on here a few days ago, but that was regarding someone who’d NEVER got a job in her life.)

The two cases I’ve mentioned were very high profile and exceptional in their details, but I’m convinced that the vast majority of people who do have to exist on benefit are no different to you or me and don’t drug, kidnap and batter their children to death.

What concerns me is that in some desperate drive to get people off benefit, many deserving cases will be cut off from a system designed to be a safety net in times of need and that we’ll get more poverty and deprivation, leading to more crime and anti-social behaviour and also – more importantly – more personal misery.

We’re lucky to live in a country where the basics are seen as the right of every citizen – a roof over your head, food, drinkable water, warmth, free medical treatment and a welfare system which tries to ensure that all these things are attainable.

Sure, no system is perfect but the UK’s seems better than some and we should be preserving it – not chipping away at its foundations.

I have a feeling we’re going to need it more than ever over the next few years…


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: