UN Statement on Visit to the UK

Statement on Visit to the United Kingdom, by Professor Philip Alston, United Nations Special Rapporteur on extreme poverty and human rights. Read here

Press Conference of the UN Special Rapporteur on extreme poverty and human rights – Preliminary findings on the UK

Watch the Streaming from Friday 16 Nov 2018:

'the UN Special Rapporteur's preliminary findings on the UK. During our 12-day visit, the Special Rapporteur on extreme poverty and human rights has investigated the Government’s efforts to tackle poverty in the UK, the impact of austerity measures, Universal Credit, Brexit, and an increasingly digital government on people living in poverty.'

"If you got a group of misogynists in a room, and said guys, how can we make this system work for men and not for women, they wouldn't have come up with too many other ideas than what's already in place."

Extract from the statement:

(iv) Pensioners Despite the protections offered by the triple lock, pensioner poverty has begun to rise after decades of decline. Between 2012/13 and 2016/17, the number of pensioners living in poverty rose by 300,000. As was made clear to me in a number of submissions and through powerful personal testimony, a group of women born in the 1950s have been particularly impacted by an abrupt and poorly phased in change in the state pension age from 60 to 66. The impact of the changes to pensionable age is such as to severely penalize those who happen to be on the cusp of retirement and who had well-founded expectations of entering the next phase of their lives, rather than being plunged back into a workforce for which many of them were ill-prepared and to which they could not reasonably have been expected to adjust with no notice.

Philip Alston


UN Special Rapporteur on Extreme #Poverty & #HumanRights. Professor at @nyulaw. http://www.facebook.com/AlstonUNSR

Commons Select Committee

Inquiry launched on effectiveness of welfare system

15 November 2018

The Committee’s new inquiry, launched as the UN’s Special Rapporteur on Extreme Poverty makes an investigative visit to the UK, will consider how effectively our welfare system works to protect against hardship and chronic deprivation.


Government to fully accept the UN Alston report on UK poverty & act on UN recommendations.

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