Friday, September 11, 2009


"The reality is that 6 in 10 poor children live in families where someone works. That's shocking isn't it -- you go out to work, perhaps two or even three part-time jobs, and you're still living below the poverty line," said Lesley Ward, president of Britain's Association of Teachers and Lecturers "Life mirroring the times of Dickens."

Anything else change since Dickensian days ? No , not much , it appears .

The link between poverty and early death is as strong today as it was a century ago, a study shows. Despite major changes in the causes of death since the 1900s, the association between deprivation and mortality remains "firmly entrenched", it found.

Despite widescale reforms such as the introduction of the NHS and social security in addition to large rises in standards of living and huge advances in medicine the patterns from the Edwardian era are still strong predictors of ill health today. Although people's experience of poverty changed over the years - in the 1900s it meant not having the bare necessities for existence but a century later poverty is defined as relative to society as a whole - the association between deprivation and high mortality did not change.

Professor Alan Maryon-Davis, President of the Faculty of Public Health said to some extent the gap may have got even worse in recent years."The health threats may have changed, but the gap between the haves and have-nots is still there, and so too is the difference in mortality.This research really drives home the message that the surest way to reduce the health risks of poverty, is to reduce poverty itself."

The outward appearance of capitalism may change but its essence doesn't .

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