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CSJ Chief Executive Baroness Stroud Delivers Maiden Speech in House of Lords during 2nd Reading of Welfare Reform and Work Bill

This week Centre for Social Justice (CSJ) Chief Executive, Baroness Stroud, made her maiden speech in the House of Lords, when she spoke during the 2nd reading of the Government’s Welfare Reform & Work Bill. This Bill redefines how the Government measures poverty and refocuses the welfare debate to include life chances, rather than a monetary measure of poverty. The Life Chances agenda was pioneered by the Centre for Social Justice in our Breakthrough Britain Reports which identified the Five Pathways to Poverty (family breakdown, serious personal debt, educational underachievement, addiction and worklessness). The work of the CSJ was referred to by a number of Peers during almost six hours of debate.

For the full text of the speech click here or to watch the speech click here.

Work of the CSJ praised during 2nd Reading of Welfare Reform and Work Bill in the House of Lords

The work of the CSJ was mentioned in a number of speeches given in the House of Lords on Tuesday.

Lord Lupton: 

Lord Lupton made his maiden speech and highlighted the CSJ’s Five Pathways to Poverty as elements of an interconnected problem that income-only based definitions of poverty fail to cover: 'It is right to highlight that income may be important in measuring poverty, but it is not the only measure. The Centre for Social Justice report, Reforming the Child Poverty Act, highlights the five measures of: worklessness, family breakdown, educational failure, addiction and serious personal debt as elements of an interconnected problem that income-only based definitions of poverty fail to cover. To end poverty in this country, we cannot afford to just play with statistics; we have to strike at its underlying causes.'

He went on to mention that effective parenting is not available to all children because – quoting from the CSJ Report: Fully Committed? How government could reverse family breakdown (2014): ‘Many of these parents received poor parenting themselves when they were children so the cycle continues unless the right intervention is given’.

Baroness Stedman-Scott:

Baroness Stedman-Scott followed Baroness Stroud and remarked on her work with the CSJ on Breakdown Britain and Breakthrough Britain. Baroness Stedman-Scott praised the CSJ saying: ‘We worked at the CSJ on Breakdown Britain and Breakthrough Britain, and I compliment her [Baroness Stroud] on identifying not just problems but the solutions that make a real difference to the lives of people.

The Earl of Listowell:

The Earl of Listowell praised the work of the CSJ and Iain Duncan Smith’s leadership of the think tank before entering government: ‘He [Iain Duncan Smith] spoke knowledgeably and passionately about the work he had been doing at the Centre for Social Justice ... to tackle some of the long-standing social issues in Britain. We found it very refreshing to hear from a politician who was so committed and understood the issues at hand so well’.

CSJ Tweets of the week

This week was Alcohol Awareness Week. The CSJ has published research into addiction and recommend policies to support addicts turn their lives around in Ambitious for Recovery

  1. @CSJthinktank #AlcoholAwarenessWeek CSJ says no one admitted to hospital with an alcohol-related condition should be discharged without being offered support
  2. @CSJthinktank #AlcoholAwarenessWeek More investment in residential rehab is needed to help people overcome alcohol addiction.

CSJ Alliance Charity: Inter-mission Youth Theatre

The CSJ is unique amongst think tanks in having an alliance of over 350 grassroots charities and small voluntary organisations that are tackling social issues in the most disadvantaged parts of Britain.

The Inter-mission Youth Theatre (IYT) works with young people from a range of different backgrounds and faiths, in particular ex-offenders, those at risk of offending or lacking opportunity. By engaging young people in theatre including Shakespeare, IYT builds their confidence, raises aspirations and provides a new support network.

For more information on IYT and details of their upcoming performances please visit their website.