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UN report on UK poverty disgraceful for British government: Analyst

Rodney Shakespeare speaking to Press TV

A new United Nations report on the situation of poverty and austerity in the UK is “a disgrace” for the British government and shows London treats its own citizens like that of other nations, a political analyst in London says.

“For an advanced economy, which the UK is supposed to be, this sort of situation is quite disgraceful,” Rodney Shakespeare said in a phone interview with the Press TV on Saturday.

"It’s a crying shame that the United Nations makes a report like this reflecting a most unnecessary reality,” Shakespeare said.

The analyst said the British government was punishing the poor with its budget cuts, saying the vulnerable sector of the society has been robbed of a higher percentage of their income as a result of government austerity measures.  

"When it (government) wants to cut back in various ways, it takes action hitting the poor proportionally many times more than it does when it hits the rich” said the analyst.

"A hundred pounds off a poor person’s income is many times higher percentage than a hundred pounds off a rich person’s income.”

Shakespeare said among other “profound” factors that were to blame for increasing poverty in the UK was the government’s failure to “address the technological shift” which he said was replacing jobs and creating the so-called “gig economy”

He said as a result, many jobs in the UK had become uncertain, temporary and part-time, compared to the steady jobs of the past, making it increasingly difficult for the people to earn a living.

Shakespeare said those failures of the government in addressing poverty poses a greater risk to the health and well-being of the population, with children suffering more as a result.

“When you put this altogether you find an alarming number of people in the UK are slipping lower and lower into situations where the children are beginning to suffer,” he said.

The analyst said the new  UN report into growing poverty in the UK showed that it was not only people in other countries who were suffering from London’s wrong policies, but Britons as well.

“We behave badly in our relations around the world. You’d expect us to behave well with our own population but that is not what is happening,” said the expert.

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