Jump to ContentJump to Main Navigation
A generation of change, a lifetime of difference?Social policy in Britain since 1979$
Users without a subscription are not able to see the full content.

Martin Evans

Print publication date: 2009

Print ISBN-13: 9781847423054

Published to Policy Press Scholarship Online: March 2012

DOI: 10.1332/policypress/9781847423054.001.0001

Show Summary Details

The changing British welfare state

The changing British welfare state

(p.12) (p.13) Two The changing British welfare state
A generation of change, a lifetime of difference?

Martin Evans

Lewis Williams

Policy Press

This chapter puts the past 30 years of policy change into a longer historical context and broadens the focus to consider a wide range of policy and social policy, and governmental and political change. A troubled economy and industrial unrest overshadowed social policy and led to the fall of the Edward Heath government in the early part of the 1970s. The Labour government of 1974–79 introduced a raft of anti-discrimination laws and expanded universal benefits, non-means-tested benefits and second-tier state pensions. In the 1980s, the overall inequity of the poll tax played a part in its huge unpopularity and that tax contributed to Margaret Thatcher's downfall. John Major's government moved back to a property-based tax for local government finance and introduced individualised income taxation. Tony Blair set the historic target of eradicating child poverty within a generation in the annual Beveridge lecture in 1999 and Gordon Brown subsequently announced the aim of ending pensioner poverty.

Keywords:   British welfare state, Edward Heath, Labour government, Margaret Thatcher, John Major, Tony Blair, Gordon Brown, British social policy, taxation, poverty

Policy Press Scholarship Online requires a subscription or purchase to access the full text of books within the service. Public users can however freely search the site and view the abstracts and keywords for each book and chapter.

Please, subscribe or login to access full text content.

If you think you should have access to this title, please contact your librarian.

To troubleshoot, please check our FAQs, and if you can't find the answer there, please contact us.