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Robert Blake and Wm. Roger Louis

Print publication date: 1996

Print ISBN-13: 9780198206262

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: October 2011

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198206262.001.0001

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Churchill and Social Reform

Churchill and Social Reform

Chapter:
(p.57) 4 Churchill and Social Reform
Source:
Churchill
Author(s):

Paul Addison

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198206262.003.0005

Winston Churchill ranks as one of the founders of the welfare state. With Herbert Asquith and David Lloyd George, he was the principal driving force behind the Liberal Party's welfare reforms of 1908–1911. At the Board of Trade, he pioneered measures to reduce poverty and unemployment through state intervention in the labour market. In 1909, he toured Britain campaigning for the ‘People's Budget’ and its radical proposals for the taxation of wealth. At the Home Office, his penal reforms as well as his measures to improve working conditions in shops and coal-mines were reflections of a continuing drive for social reform that was cut short by his transfer, in 1911, to the Admiralty. In the course of a lifetime in party politics, Churchill often touched on social questions, and there were other phases of his career in which he bore some responsibility for the development of social policy.

Keywords:   Winston Churchill, Britain, welfare state, social reform, social policy, Liberal Party, poverty, unemployment, taxation

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