Sunday 04 May 2014. Child deaths are increasing under Cameron.
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Dear Mr Cameron,
Britain is without doubt a very wealthy nation which still, presently, retains some semblance of universal healthcare, even though those who benefit most from it these days are private companies and which faces extinction in the near future.
As poverty increases so too does the cost to country, the Joseph Rowntree Trust puts the price of child poverty, alone, in excess of £25 billion a year. If you wanted to bring the cost of welfare down then eradicating poverty would be the shortest route. As it is, your war on the poor is driving poverty up with 4.7 million children, let alone anyone else, projected to be living in poverty by 2020.
Children in the UK are more likely to die before reaching their fifth birthday than in any other country in Europe except Malta in the most unequal country in the western world. Your driving austerity on the poor is resulting in an ever increasing death toll. Children can in no way fit in your striver/skiver rhetoric, they are in every way the entirely innocent victims of austerity and one can hardly blame parents for not striving with 6.7 million working families living in poverty. That kind of figure is not a failure of individuals that is a catastrophic systemic failure over which you and your government preside and, indeed, pursue and promote.
The new Claimant Commitment Contract, its premise based on sanctions, is a blunt and brutal instrument of forced obedience with no regard for its wider implications on families and children. It's most avid adherent is going to be maintained in poverty despite working 5 days a week. The added costs of meeting the stringent requirements of mobility to placements is only going to add to pressures on the meanest survival. Suffering and hardship can only increase under such a brutal regime, and those with the least power and voice, children, are undoubtedly going to suffer, a suffering that can only increase over time.