DWP Secretary denounced report, but civil servants admit it was accurate but offended govt ‘politically’
Your Secretary of State [denounced UN’s report], but now you’re calling it in evidence
Leading civil servants working for the Department of Work and Pensions (DWP) have been forced to admit to a committee of MPs that the report submitted by the UN’s Special Rapporteur for extreme poverty on desperate poverty in the UK is ‘factually correct’.
The civil servants danced around the issue as well as they could, but eventually had to confess that the report was accurate – and that Tory ministers who had denounced the report – who included DWP Secretary Amber Rudd and PM Theresa May – had ‘taken exception’ to it politically:
Asked by one MP whether she had denounced the report, one civil servant responded that she had not – and was challenged by committee chair Frank Field: “Your Secretary of State did – now you’re calling it in evidence”.
After his tour of the UK, Alston’s stated among other things that the government could fix poverty ‘overnight’ and ‘at very little cost’ if it chose to, that the government’s policies were ‘cruel and inhuman’ on a level equivalent to those in China – and that Tory policies could have been designed by misogynists, so damaging are they to women and their children. He also said that the Tories effectively tell people at their most vulnerable, “You’re on your own”.
Now senior civil servants in the responsible department have had to confirm that Alston was not exaggerating – and that ministers have objected out of political motivation.
No change of Tory PM is going to make a jot of difference to the terrible suffering – identified as needless and easily fixed – being imposed daily on literally millions of our children and most vulnerable. Nor will remaining in the EU, since those privations were imposed while the UK is an EU member.
Their only hope is a general election and a Labour government.
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