Data: Welfare spending breakdown

The Labour blog Left Foot Forward provides a useful breakdown of UK welfare spend that demonstrates where most of the money is going, and how that might be shaping government policy.

Despite the spin on unemployment and immigration, for example:

“Almost half our welfare expenditure, all £78.4 billion of it, is spent on our ageing population. And the number of people drawing a state pension is ever-growing”

Benefit and tax credit expenditure, 2009-2010

Next, “A breakdown of [the 22.08 per cent of welfare expenditure that goes to workers on low incomes] shows an enormous focus on housing, which explains the increased attention on housing benefit:”

Welfare expenditure for people on low incomes, 2009-2010

Simple, but useful. Sadly, there’s no link to the raw data. Interestingly, in looking for that I found this website on UK public spending – created by left wing blogger Christopher Cantrill. As both of these sources have a self-declared political orientation, it’s worth tracking the source of the data, declared here.

(By the way, regarding political bias: if a source has declared it, that doesn’t mean their information is not valid, only that you need to check the information. If a source has not declared a bias, you should always assume they have one, and still check the information.)

Can you add anything more?

4 thoughts on “Data: Welfare spending breakdown”

    1. If they’re illegal, they can’t.

      I’m fully in support of working migrants not being able to come here until they have a job, and enough ticket for a flight home, but if they come here and anything falls through, we need to help these people.

      Also, if they are refugees, fleeing war for example, we need to help them. The alternative for people who are desperate is crime or slavery.

      And before you start with ‘We need to help our own first’ there is plenty of money for us to help our own and help people in trouble, its just not being spent properly!

  1. What I ‘d like to know is : as Welfare is a contributory or insurance system, how much of the spend is covered by compulsory contributions, rather than by taxes? If Jo Bloggs gets unemployment benefit after being laid off, we need to remember he (and his employer) have in many cases contributed a lot of money to the system while working. It makes no sense saying, for instance “Welfare spending in the UK is double spending on Defense”.

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