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Sociological Explanations for the Existence and Persistence of Poverty

Dependency based Explanations
These sorts of explanations argue that the poor are in some way, the cause of their own poverty.
At their most extreme, they suggest that the welfare system in Britain actually makes people
dependant on it by providing…

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Many New Right commentators (e.g. Saunders) suggest that a large number of the poor see
poverty as a choice, a way of life preferable to work. Young mothers are often cited as examples
of this ­ for example by having a child in order to secure a flat that will…

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groups do get employment it is likely to be in short term, low paid, temporary and possibly
`unofficial' work. For many supporters of the welfare state, it is these groups who deserve
help because they are blameless victims of the economic system.

Polly Toynbee spent a year living and working…

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e.g. in higher and further education. In the NHS there are also discrepancies since the
lower socioeconomic groups have more ill health and therefore a greater need for
services, yet they are entitled to no more services than the higher groups, whose mortality
rates are far lower.


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