In What Way Might the Legacy of the 1834, Poor Law Be Seen in Contemporary Welfare Policy?

Topics: Unemployment, Poverty, Welfare Pages: 8 (2453 words) Published: January 16, 2011
In what way might the legacy of the 1834, poor Law be seen in contemporary welfare policy?  
This essay will endeavour to highlight the advantages/disadvantages, and how the welfare state treats individual members of the community differently .The historically changing conceptualization of the welfare state and its provision of social services the individuals democratic right to access the state provided benefits, are looked at in their historically and geographically changing existing structure. Conflicting conservative, liberal and socialist methods to the view of individual vs. collective responsibility are considered in the context of rival welfare state arrangements.  

The Poor Law was established and put into motion in 1601 during the time of Elizabeth I. The aims of the poor law, according to Golding and Middleton were work, discipline, deterrence and classification. The poor law was the most important policy development dealing with poverty up until the end of the nineteenth century and it was a development, which main objective was upon control and deterrence. The Poor Law of 1601 lasted for over two centuries, but it was inefficient. Governments did not have the control, means or organisation to deal with poverty effectively. Poverty was a regional and national problem, and yet each local parish was left to deal with it individually The Poor Law cannot be seen just as a vehicle used to preserve life of those who could not feed, clothe or house themselves. Rather it should be seen as a part of the social response of a society that was moving from a wholly agricultural and village based society towards an industrialised and largely urban society.  What is the legacy?....... the welfare state of to day with social benefits for all and free medical help also education no one needs to starve in Britain. The idears of the older poor laws can be seen in to days welfare state as an extension of these poor laws through more recent governments policy’s. Althougfh the pressant government is implamenting som cuts this is still the best welfare system in the world to cut cost of benefits money for health carwe and education all hit the poor working classes the establishment of the poor law has had a significant bearing on how the lowcal government has progress the poor are still blamed for being poor  

As the NHS is a main factor regarding welfare, given to all the people of Britain. However this was not always so, looking at the early years the Welfare laws and acts that have passed down throughout the centuries, which ultimately leads to the creation of the NHS. The earlier welfare reforms were known as the 'Poor Laws', which began in the Elizabethan era. In 1601 the first Poor Laws were passed which simply put each parish in charge of giving out relief to the parish poor. In practice the new laws should have been adequate for the people at this time, however there was no monortring and the laws were not regulated and if a individual moved, they were not entitled to any relief from their new parish. These laws did not changed until 1834. When in 1834 the Poor Law Amendment Act was passed, its main intention was to change many of the principles of the old poor laws, that previous laws had neglected to deal with.  In the past for example, the Victorian, poor were considered as, 1) idle Work shy, and did not want to work

2. Regarded poverty as the individuals fault.
3. They encouraged and carried out severe handling of the poor.   Unions set up Workhouses. The structure of out-relief was abolished which had kept the poor in their own communities. With the abolishment of slavery act 1833 and the industrial revolution, the social movment from rural to urban areas the overcrowding and health problems this caused new policys were introduced to cut the costs of welfare and to ensure the relief given did not amount to more than the lowest pay of a labourer The  main aims of the 1834 poor law Amendment act, was...
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