As Iain Duncan Smith’s radical welfare reform programme looms on the horizon, and the country wallows in the highest levels of unemployment for decades, the nature of the welfare state and needs of benefit claimants is under forensic attention. What are the myths and justifications behind the stigmatisation of those living off the state, and is the rhetoric of the press and politicians exacerbating the situation? How can we find solutions to balance the welfare debate? 

In this special report, Total Politics and Turn2us, a benefits information service, bring together a range of politicians, charity representatives and research experts to discuss potential solutions to this problem.

Read the report here:

Breakfast meeting: Claiming and blaming

Paying the price: Interview with Rob Tolan of Turn2us

Inside view: Welfare reform minister Lord Freud on Universal Credit

The benefits of reform: Luciana Berger MP on why stigmatising the unemployed only makes reform harder

Welfare and ill feeling: Case study Adam Lomax tells us about a life on benefits

Tags: Benefits, Issue 53, Special report, Stigma, Turn2us, Welfare state