Social security: understanding public attitudes

Exploring the social security system

Fabian Society

November 2020 - March 2022

This project aimed to consider whether, in light of the Covid-19 pandemic, a new consensus on social security could emerge, both broadly within society and across the political spectrum.

In the shadows - March 2022

This report looked at the ‘shadow welfare’ - the financial support provided to households by the tax-free allowances in income tax and national insurance – together with social security to make policy change recommendations that would shift the balance from ‘shadow welfare’ to social security.

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Security for everyone - September 2021

This report examined the future of non-means-tested benefits for working age adults and children, indicating that consensus can be built to strengthen non-means tested benefits as a supplement to an adequate means-tested system.

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How to increase social security with public support - May 2021

This report shows how a new consensus could be established for higher social security payments for children and working-age adults following the Covid-19 pandemic.

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Impacts of the planned Universal Credit cuts - February 2021

This report found that removing the £20 increase to Universal Credit introduced in response to the Covid-19 pandemic would disproportionately affect working families and disabled people:

  • 87 per cent of the cuts (£5.5bn per year) will hit working or disabled households
  • 95 per cent of people pulled into poverty by the cuts (720,000 people) live in working or disabled households

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Mass unemployment and benefit cuts after the pandemic - November 2020

This paper examined the consequences for families of a sharp rise in unemployment alongside the cuts to social security introduced at the start of the Covid-19 pandemic.

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Man lecturing woman