Economic inequality is a problem in the UK. It has grown under successive governments for the last quarter of a century. The poorest families have increasingly lost out on the benefits of economic growth, while the very wealthiest have seen their incomes spiral upwards.
Oxfam research has shown that the five richest families in the UK are wealthier than the bottom 20 per cent of the entire population. That's just five households with more money than 12.6 million people -almost the same as the number of people living below the poverty line in the UK.
The gap is widening. In the last twenty years, incomes for the bottom 90 per cent of the country increased by a quarter. In the same time, the richest 0.1 percent saw their income double- four times the increase of the bottom 90 percent of the population.
The concentration of wealth and power at the top has real impact on people's lives and is a sign of economic sickness - it slows down growth, meaning there is less money to go into essential services for the people who need them most. We work with people fighting poverty every day - closing the inequality gap from the bottom up by lifting them out of poverty in both our work in the UK and internationally. We're calling for the Scottish and Welsh governments and the new London mayor to tackle inequality and focus on reducing poverty in the UK.