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Re-defining Beveridge’s Giant Evils – Charting an Alternative Course for the Welfare State


New Class project: A Social State for 2015

A Social State for 2015 is a new project launched this week by Class (Centre of Labour and Social Studies) to coincide with the 70th anniversary of the Beveridge Report.

Over the next period Class will launch a series of papers and articles from high-profile economists, academics and journalists including Owen Jones, Kate Bell, Richard Murphy and Prof Keith Ewing which will look at various aspects of a new Social State.

The project will re-define Beveridge’s Giant Evils for today and provide detailed policy suggestions covering education, housing, health, welfare, economics, employment and collectivism.

The project has been launched this week with a collection of blogs looking at the role of a new NHS, the return of squalor, the myth of the welfare scrounger, and many more are being added daily.

In a watershed moment for policy development, the Beveridge Report, seventy years ago announced the pursuit of a new settlement, one that would dramatically change the structure of Britain for the better.

In the midst of World War II, with a budget deficit and national debt that makes today’s look negligible, the Report laid the basis for the radical reforms introduced by the Labour Government in 1945. If war-time Britain could summon up the energy and hope to build a better world in 1945, this generation certainly can too.

With this in mind, this project will look at what Beveridge’s analysis of society can teach us about the Giant Evils of today and how can we use this understanding to chart an alternative course for a welfare state - or Social State - fit for a new settlement in 2015.


Notes to Editors:

1. The Centre for Labour and Social Studies (Class) is a new think tank established in 2012 by Unite the Union, GMB and the Institute of Employment Rights to act as a centre for left debate and discussion and has the growing support of a number of trade Unions including PCS, ASLEF, UCATT and GFTU. Originating in the labour movement, Class is working with a broad coalition of supporters, academics and experts to develop and advance alternative policies for today. 

2. A Social State for 2015 is the first high-profile project launched by Class. More information and a collection of blog articles can be found here:

More Information:

Contact Rachel Yates 0207 611 2569 or 07939 753 061 or
Twitter: @classthinktank