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Why hasn't Britain abolished poverty? - 16 December 2021

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Britain has failed to abolish poverty because we’ve been looking at it the wrong way. Income inequality is an unhelpful lens that has led politicians to treat the symptoms rather than the causes. That's the argument of a new report by John Penrose MP, Chair of the Conservative Policy Forum.

In it, he says the levelling up of opportunities is already underway, but it's just a starting point: we need to break down "glass ceilings" and "narrow gates" that block people from rising to their true potential.

Join our panel to discuss the report's findings, what they mean for the levelling up agenda, and how we can accelerate progress on tackling poverty.


  • John Penrose, MP for Weston-super-Mare and Chair of the Conservative Policy Forum
  • Polly Mackenzie, Director of Demos
  • Julian McCrae, Director of Engage Britain
  • David Goodhart, author of The Road to Somewhere: The New Tribes shaping British Politics, and Head Hand Heart: The Struggle for Dignity and Status in the 21st Century
  • Professor Bobby Duffy, Director of the Policy Institute at King's College London (chair)

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16 December 2021