Laura Sharman 19 November 2019

Benefits payments at lowest level since 1948, says think tank

Benefits payments at lowest level since 1948, says think tank image

Social security payments are at their lowest level since the 1948, a new report from a think tank has found.

The IPPR said that back in 1948, Unemployment Benefit was equivalent to 20% of average weekly earnings, while Universal Credit is only 12.5% of average earnings today.

IPPR is calling for a fundamental reform of the system, warning it is keeping claimants in 'near constant financial insecurity'.

It calls on political parties to invest £8.4bn emergency funding package into the benefit system every year over the next parliament.

Clare McNeil, IPPR associate director and lead author of the report, said: 'Social security should offer a safety net, not a tightrope over poverty. We call on political parties to commit to reversing the impact of the benefits freeze and allowing those in-work to keep more of their earnings.

'We argue that we need the first ever measure of ‘adequacy’ for social security payments so that no future government can so easily hold our social security system to ransom.'

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