Watch: Dr Philippa Whitford talks about the Drivers of Poverty in the UK
From debates at Westminster, to litter picking, or charity dips in the sea, I’ve worked hard over the last 2 years for my home constituency here in Central Ayrshire. I brought over 30 years’ experience as a surgeon to my role as Shadow SNP Health Spokesperson at Westminster, and, from my experience working in the NHS and in Westminster, I’d like to talk to you about the drivers of poverty in the UK. The biggest driver of ill health is poverty, and the biggest driver of poverty is this Tory government.
Drivers of Poverty
Arguably, the most vulnerable in our society are our children and poverty among children has risen sharply since the first Tory Welfare changes in 2012. It is unacceptable that 3.7 million children in the UK live in poverty and, while the Government like to imply this is somehow due to laziness among their parents, 63% of those children belong to working households. It is unacceptable that 1400 children die every year in the UK as a result of poverty and deprivation.
The cruel cuts imposed under Tory austerity have had appalling effects on many within our society, especially those who are least able to bear the burden. This Conservative government has implemented the Bedroom Tax, cuts to Disability allowances, longer waits for any financial support, the Two-Child limit for Tax Credits and the infamous ‘rape clause’.
Austerity is an ideological choice propagated and perpetuated by the will of this Conservative government. From the Bedroom Tax to disability cuts to the appalling rape clause, they’re always picking on the most vulnerable in our society. This continual attack enforces the drivers of poverty that cause ill health especially amongst those least able to afford a basic standard of living on low incomes.
Send me back to Westminster to stand up for them and to stand up for Central Ayrshire.