Is it just me, or has the subject of poverty become the defining issue of recent years? Hardly a week seems to go by without the appearance of a new detailed study of the topic; now the Joseph Rowntree Foundation has simultaneously published two reports which take very different approaches in shedding new light on this area.
The first report - Poverty, wealth and place in Britain, 1968 to 2005 - takes a comprehensive look at economic trends in the UK in recent decades, and concludes that the gap between rich and poor is as large as it has been for 40 years. The second report - Public Attitudes to Economic Inequality - finds that a majority of the public consider the difference between high and low incomes to be too large. For further reading on this topic, the Guardian has produced a series of articles entitled Divided Britain.