Strivers & Skivers, the reality behind the rhetoric

April 29, 2013

The New Economics Foundation have looked into the basis of this rhetoric. They write that politicians and commentators would have us believe that only people in paid jobs are hard-working and make a valuable contribution to society. People claiming out-of-work benefits are lazy and worthless; they choose a life of leisure and get ‘something for nothing’.

This Mythbuster reveals the reality behind the rhetoric. Only a tiny minority of claimants are able but unwilling to work. A much bigger share of the social security budget goes towards subsidising low wages through in-work benefits. Far from ‘skiving’, most people who are not in paid work are making an extremely valuable contribution through a range of unpaid activities – without which the whole of our society, including the formal economy, would collapse.

See their report at

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