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Overweight or unhealthy people who fail to attend exercise sessions should have their benefits cut, the Local Government Information Unit proposed. Such a measure, included in a report produced with Westminster Council, would be unjust and do more harm than good.
Should the welfare system be reformed? Is the tax credit system flawed? Is a universal credit a good idea in principle? The answer to all these questions is 'yes'. But if the question is about whether the government is tackling these issues in the correct way, the answer is 'no'. A huge change of direction is required.
The times in which the powerful and the comfortable could decide what is best for lives about which they have little comprehension are passing. Our family saying for this condition was 'VWTGTC'. It stood for 'vicar's wife taking gruel to cottagers'.