The Beveridge Report of 1942 - Essay Example

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This essay discusses the Beveridge Report of 1942 is a very important document in the history of UK. The report outlined for foundations of the modern welfare system of the country, became extremely popular. It discusses the main recommendations of the Beveridge Report in detail…
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The Beveridge Report Inserts His/Her Inserts Grade Inserts (19, August, Introduction The Beveridge Report of 1942 is a very important document in the history of United Kingdom. The report outlined for the first time foundations of the modern welfare system of the country and became extremely popular (Elliot, 2011). The suggestions given in the report are considered momentous given the time in which they were given. We will discuss the main recommendations of the Beveridge Report below in detail.
Recommendations of the Beveridge Report
One of the recommendations given in the Beveridge Report was of a universal welfare system for all countrymen. The report argued in favour of a weekly insurance contribution by all working members of the society (Beveridge Report Executive Summary, 1942, 20). This payments were recommended to be use to pay benefits to the poor and unemployed. In this way the Beveridge Report argued for a universal welfare system where the care of people will be the responsibility of the state. Such a welfare system was never suggested before in the country and therefore this particular recommendation holds great value in history.
In the Beveridge Report, it was also recommended that revolutionary measures were required to solve problems that were in front of the country. The report also called for an end to “sectional interests” (Beveridge Report Executive Summary, 1942, 7) and argued for a system that treated everyone equally. The report recommended that it was time to grow past philosophy of inequality and to treat everyone equally. This was another ponderous recommendation of the Beveridge Report.
The report also called for a health care system of a public nature that will offer free health service to all the citizens of the country (BBC, 1942). This was also a unique recommendation given in the report. Such a system had never been proposed by anyone in the country before.
Another important recommendation of the Beveridge Report was that there should be a balance between the role of state and individual citizen. The report made it clear that it was not arguing in favour of communism as it acknowledged the right of an individual to earn more than that is required for him and his family (Beveridge Report Executive Summary, 1942, 9). This was another important recommendation that differentiated the reforms suggested from communist ideas. A person was free to live an economic life but had an obligation towards the state in the form of insurance payments and other payments, in the return of which state promised free health care, unemployment and other necessary benefits.
The report also identified five major problems of the country namely, want, disease, ignorance, idleness, and squalor (Beveridge Report Executive Summary, 1942, 8). The report recommended that any social policy for progress will not be successful if it fails to tackle these five problems.
The Beveridge Report of 1942 is considered a significant landmark in the history of social policy of United Kingdom. This report for the first time highlighted the basic principles upon which the social welfare structure of the country stands today. The report recommended a universal social welfare system for everyone in the country, health care system, balance between state and individual. The report also recommended a revolutionary policy keeping in mind the five biggest problems the country was facing at that time.
BBC UK. (1942). Beveridge lays welfare foundations. Accessed on August 19, 2012 from <> Beveridge, Sir William. (1942). Social Insurance and Allied Service. Presented to Parliament by Command of His Majesty, Executive Summary. Accessed on August 19, 2012 from <> Elliot, L. (2011). As the 1942 Beveridge report said: in a crisis, be revolutionary. Guardian UK. Accessed on August 19, 2012 from <>Read More
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