Centre for Welfare Reform
The Centre for Welfare Reform was formed in 2009 to help create a world where everyone can be an equal citizen.
The Centre for Welfare Reform was established in 2009 as an independent think tank working nationally and globally, but rooted in Sheffield. We have over 120 Fellows who share an emancipatory vision of citizenship: everyone is equal, everyone is different and together we must create inclusive communities. We are a citizen think tank. This means we believe everyone can make a difference, everyone can have good ideas and together we can turn those ideas into reality. We are opposed to the current system, where policy is driven by special interests, shallow ideologies and a desire for personal advancement. A good society must be defined by those who truly understand what disadvantage and exclusion means. Good practice must meet the real-world challenges of meaningful implementation and sustainability with integrity. Good policy must be open, democratic and accessible to all. We are also a founding member of Citizen Network a global cooperative working for a world where everybody matters.
The welfare state is a beautiful and necessary thing; sadly it’s widely misunderstood and frequently under attack. Instead of trying to improve our collective security and strengthen mutual support we’ve got stuck in a cycle of meaningless bureaucratic reforms and harmful cuts. It’s those for whom life is toughest who suffer most, but in the end we all suffer. Instead we must start to create a society where everyone’s wellbeing is secured and where everyone can flourish. This doesn’t just mean public services need to change: citizens must able to bring about democratic change in their neighbourhoods; we need universal economic security, basic income and greater economic equality; and we need new foundations, constitutional changes to protect and sustain social and economic improvements for the future. Today welfare reform has come to mean only cuts, but if we take our responsibilities to each other seriously then we’ve got to discover the true meaning of the word reform.
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