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Oxfam's vision is for everyone in the UK to have enough to live on, and for all men, women and children to be treated with respect and dignity no matter how much money they have.

A Tale of Two Britains: Inequality in the UK

A Tale of Two Britains: Inequality in the UK
4 pages

Dransfield, Sarah

Publication date
17 Mar 2014

Oxfam GB

Media briefing

Inequality is a growing problem in the UK. While austerity measures in Britain continue to hit the poorest families hardest, a wealthy elite has seen their incomes spiral upwards, exacerbating income inequality which has grown under successive governments over the last quarter of a century.

Today, the five richest families in the UK are wealthier than the bottom 20 per cent of the entire population. That’s just five households with more money than 12.6 million people – almost the same as the number of people living below the poverty line in the UK.

Starting with this week’s Budget, the government needs to re-balance the books by raising revenues from those who can afford it - by clamping down on companies and individuals who avoid paying their fair share of tax and by starting to explore greater taxation of extreme wealth – rather than relying on cuts to services that have a disproportionate impact on the poorest in society, some 13 million people who are currently classed as living below the poverty line.