If you’ve been awake and paying attention in Britain over the last few months, you will have heard of the ‘strivers’ and ‘skivers’. These are apparently the two kinds of people in the country. Those that ‘work and want to get on in life’ and those that want to lie in bed in the morning and scrounge off everyone else.
The Conservatives have placed ads like this one:
And then the opposition have replied in kind with this sort of thing:
While the playground barking continues about who is actually on the side of the strivers, who are obviously the goodies in this equation, nobody appears to be actually questioning the premise of the argument. Who are these skivers who don’t work?
The New Economics Foundation has launched a new series of ‘mythbusters‘, looking at some of the popular myths around economics and politics. This week’s is on strivers and skivers and includes this graph. It’s a breakdown of who gets benefits. See if you can spot the skivers that are apparently bankrupting the country.
The fact is, the majority of the benefits budget goes to the elderly. Of the rest, the largest share goes to those who are actually working, and to support low income families. A very small 2.6% goes to those who are fit to work but aren’t. Of that 2.6% on jobseekers’ allowance, just 10% have been claiming for over a year.
So if you catch your MP playing the strivers vs skivers game, send them this graph.