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A few coppers and some silver coins: all the Tories think you’re worth.

The Conservatives have put another 100,000 children into poverty – meaning 4.2 million are now living under the breadline.

That’s a surge of 600,000 since the Tories came back into office in 2010. Now almost one-third of UK children are living in poverty due to Tory starvation-austerity policies.

And the affected children are among a staggering 14.5 million UK citizens found to be in poverty in 2018-19 – the highest total since the statistics were first collected in 2002 and an increase of half a million in a single year.

Bear in mind also that poverty is a relative measure, being calculated on an individual’s, or a family’s, income as a percentage of the national average.

The national average income has been depressed by Conservative policies over the last 10 years, meaning fewer people are said to be in poverty now than would have been in the past – but they are still suffering from Tory starvation policies.

Worse is to come:

The coronavirus crisis is likely to cause a huge increase in poverty as families face job losses and falling earnings.

The Tory government simply hasn’t done enough to secure people’s income as the pandemic bites.

Income guarantees for employees depend on their employers signing up to them – and many have simply decided to lay off their workers instead, forcing them to claim Universal Credit.

Workers on zero-hours contracts and people who are self-employed have also been told to claim Universal Credit – creating a bottleneck of claimants queuing for attention online or on the phone.

Self-employed people have been offered the possibility of an income guarantee similar to that offered to employees (whose employers took up the offer) – in June, when they are likely to have fallen into serious debt.

All of this – and the huge level of poverty that they have already caused – could be prevented, simply by providing a Universal Basic Income (UBI) for everyone.

It’s simpler than the hugely-complicated systems the Tories are bringing in, and it also happens to be cheaper.

In fact, the only reason – that makes sense – for the Tories not to introduce UBI is that they enjoy forcing poverty on people, and they are taking the opportunity afforded by coronavirus to inflict as much of it on us as possible.

Source: Number of children living in poverty rises by 100,000 in a year, ‘shocking’ figures reveal | The Independent

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