Social Policy - Laws relating to poverty
The Welfare legislation of the late 1940s that was based on Beveridge's recommendations still survives in contemporary Britain , although the way in which the welfare state works has changed and the institution has come under increasing pressure and criticism as a result of rapid social change. This has led to changes in the social policies that aim to deal with poverty. Arguably all of the more recent policies have tried to force people away from relying upon the state. Two main approaches can be identified.
Individualisation – this is an approach that has been identified by various sociologists. Individualisation means that social policies are aimed at making people feel that they are individuals and ought to take the main responsibility for ensuring their own welfare. This is reflected in policies such as the Child Support Agency and the Working Families Tax Credit.
Secondly, there has been more of a shift towards means-tested benefits. Various schemes have been created to test individuals' eligibility for benefits. Unemployment benefit, for example is now rigorously monitored and claimants have to attend job training schemes.