Stuck on London’s hard shoulder: Social needs in a fast moving city

Published: January 2010 Publication Type: Publication

Authors: Rushanara Ali, Will Norman

London is one of the wealthiest cities on the planet, but also suffers from serious levels of poverty and unemployment. London’s top 10% benefited greatly from the financial boom – but relatively little wealth trickled down and now the cost of dealing with its consequences are being shared out across the whole population, with public spending cuts likely to hit the poorest hardest.

This report forms part of a larger programme of work to understand and map the UK’s changing needs. It looks in detail at poverty in London, as well as the problems of isolation and blocked opportunities. It predicts that the gulf between London’s haves and have-nots is likely to widen over the next few years.

While many enjoy life in the fast lane of the global economy, hundreds of thousands of families and individuals will end up stuck on the hard shoulder, as opportunities pass them by. The report explores in particular the needs of three particularly vulnerable groups – undocumented workers, older people and some of the city’s younger generation – and sets out what London should be doing to support those in greatest need.

Download a full pdf of the publication.