Essay by PaperNerd ContributorUniversity, Bachelor's January 2002

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The intention of this essay is to discuss the physical and psychological consequences of living in poverty. It will explore the history of the Welfare State and access its significance in the fight against poverty, outlining the effect of poverty on various groups of people within society, and how it influences health.

The Social Insurance and Allied Services Report of 1942 provided the basis for much of the post war legislation that set up the Welfare State. It focused on the evils against which social policy ought to be directed. This report, often referred to as the "˜cradle to grave security' (politics UK 2001) written by a civil servant, William Beveridge was to be the most important document in 20th Century British Social Policy. In it, Beveridge identified the five "˜giants' or "˜evils' to be eradicated. The report was immediately popular, and in the belief that the labour party was the most intent on implementing its recommendations was believed to be largely responsible for the winning of the election in 1945 (Barnard and Burgess 1996).

The five "˜giants' or "˜evils' were identified as Ignorance, to be defeated by free secondary education for all, following the 1994 Education Act. Set up the "˜tripartite' system.

Squalor, to be defeated by the New Towns Act 1946, creating a ring of new towns around London. Also the Town and Country Planning Act (1947). Idleness, to be defeated by a commitment to maintaining "˜full employment' through the economic policies of J.M.Keynes "" "˜Keynesianism'. In 1994 a White Paper on employment was followed by Beveridge's book Full Employment in a Free Society. Disease, to be defeated by the setting up of the National Health Service, following the 1946 National Health Act. From 5th July 1948, all health care and treatment was free to all at...