Facebook icon Twitter icon Forward icon

The Government’s ‘social renewal’ legacy will be defined by two publications

The Government is working away on two important documents which may well come to define the Prime Minister’s ‘social renewal’ legacy.

The Government’s landmark ‘life chances strategy’ and the initial findings of the Heseltine review into the re-generation of ‘Britain’s 100 worst estates’ are both expected to be published in the weeks following the referendum. These two agendas should not be delivered in isolation.

If the Government’s Life Chances Strategy is to mean anything to the people it seeks to help, it should flow through the rebuilding of these rundown and deprived ‘estates.

The Prime Minister’s ambitious plans to rebuild some of our poorest communities, should be about more than bricks and mortar. New buildings will mean nothing, if the lives of our poorest neighbours remain unchanged.

The Heseltine review should looks towards a life chances approach, rooted in support for individuals and families to demonstrate how these new estates will rebuild lives, not simply run down homes. 

The Heseltine review and the Life Chances Strategy were announced together, in the same Prime Ministerial speech in January, they should be delivered together too.

The new Mayor of London should appoint a Deputy Mayor for Social Justice

In a little over a week London will elect a new Mayor.  Whoever is elected next Thursday the new Mayor of London should make appointing a Deputy Mayor for Social Justice one of their first acts.

Too many Londoners are held back by poverty. 1 in 6 Londoners aged 16-24 are not in employment and 4 out of 5 low paid Londoners are still low paid after 10 years. London is a great city. With the focus of a full time Deputy Mayor for Social Justice it can also be an incubator for strategies that turn lives around in our poorest London communities.

The Mayor of London has a wide ranging brief across almost every area of policy. No Mayor can expect to devote all their time to the enormous task of tackling poverty across London.

Next Friday London will have a newly elected Mayor. After the celebrations the new Mayor’s next move should be to appoint someone with the authority and passion to change lives across London. It would be a defining act.

Financial Capability is the next step in Universal Credit reform

The start of May marks a significant milestone in the roll out of Universal Credit (UC). Universal Credit  will be available to single people in every Job Centre in the country. This is a huge step towards incentivising work as a route out of poverty.

New Work & Pensions Secretary, Stephen Crabb has indicated that he will continue with the delivery plan of Universal Credit. This is hugely encouraging. A fully rolled out Universal Credit is the way to make work pay.

But with the advent of Universal Credit comes a number of new opportunities.

The CSJ, the home of Universal Credit, is currently looking at how financial capability relates to digital technologies, financial education and access to low cost credit.

The CSJ has repeatedly called for a Universal Support system to complement UC, and a financial inclusion programme aiming to tackle the issues that lead people into debt would be a smart way to ensure that those in receipt of UC are equipped to avoid serious personal debt.

Upcoming Events

The Centre for Social Justice has two public events coming up:

The Launch and Briefing of our Report: ‘Military Families and Transition’ with Johnny Mercer MP

Tuesday 3rd May 2016  - 14.30-16:00 - Central London venue

'Home Improvements' Breakfast Seminar with a Government Minister and the Centre for Social Justice

Tuesday 7th June 2016 - 08:00 - 09:30 - Central London venue

If you are interested in attending either event please email: