Labour welfare reforms essay tips
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Labour Welfare Reforms essay tips. Assess the impact of the welfare reforms of the Labour Government on the lives of the British people. What is the question asking you to do?.

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Labour Welfare Reforms essay tips

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Labour Welfare Reforms essay tips

Assess the impact of the welfare reforms of the Labour Government on the lives of the British people.

What is the question asking you to do?

  • Have to assess the impact of the welfare reforms on the British people. Did the reforms have a positive or negative impact of the lives of the British population?

  • The word assess means that you have to examine each key reform area and arrive at a conclusion regarding their impact. Examine both positive and negative arguments.

  • Timescale: You need to examine the period 1944-1951. Set the scene - why were the reforms introduced? Once this is done you can begin to examine each reform area.

Essay Plan

  • Line of Argument in essay: How did the reforms help individual groups of people in Britain?

  • Focus on the ‘five giants’: want, disease, ignorance, squalor and idleness. How successful were the Reform Acts in solving these problems?

  • Also examine/discuss individual groups - How did the Reforms help: children, sick, those unable to work, people in poverty and those in poor housing? These are ideas that can be referred to in your essay.

Introduction - General Ideas

  • Your opening sentence should grab the attention of the marker straight away. Perhaps a key question or a quote. Something that highlights the aim of your essay and gives you the opportunity to refer back to.

  • Outline how you are going to answer the question - What are your key arguments? Also aim to ask questions.

  • Ensure that there is always a link to each paragraph - a statement or sentence.

Introduction - Specific Ideas

Opening sentence: some suggestions - Many historians believe that the Labour Welfare Reforms of 1945-51 enhanced the lives of the British people. However, was this actually the case? or

‘’ This is the greatest advance in our history. There can be no turning point. From now on Beveridge is not the name of a man; it is the name of a way of life’’. (‘The Five Giants’ by Nicholas Timmins’)

Introduction - Specific Ideas

Comment of the importance of this quote - it is referring to the positive impact of the Welfare Reforms. Create a line of argument using this quote - were the Labour Welfare Reforms successful in improving the lives of the British public?

Line of argument - create questions in your introduction that can be argued/answered later. Did the reforms manage to provide an efficient health service?

Link paragraphs - It is clear to see that there are many arguments about the reforms but why were they introduced?

Main Body of Essay - General Ideas

Ensure that you always refer back to the question - make sure you don’t just ‘tell the story’ of the reforms - actually assess the impact they had.

Include detailed, specific evidence to support the point/argument of the paragraph. Make sure you include a topic sentence - what is the key argument of this paragraph?

Support your points by referring to debates/references from Historians. When planning your essay, note down key quotes and debates. Again - make sure you always provide a link to the next paragraph.

Main Body of Essay - Specific Ideas - Paragraph One

  • Focus on why the reforms were introduced. Key argument idea - these are the problems the Labour Government had to deal with - were they successful in overcoming them?

  • Public wanted social change after the war. Wanted to create a ‘land fit for heroes’. Evacuation illustrated serious health problems.

  • These are the reasons why the reforms were introduced - refer to the question: the scene was now set - would the government respond to these challenges?

Main Body of Essay - Key points/Arguments

  • Five Giants idea - ‘want’ - this area was dealt with in the Beveridge Report of 1942 - British public had got what they wanted. Report sold 636,000 copies - massive amount. This would be the foundations for the Labour Government

  • This paragraph should focus on the idea of ‘want’ - outline the principles of the Beveridge Report. Need to also examine the creation of a state insurance fund - social security, family allowances. How successful was the government in meeting the needs of those ill or injured?

Disease would be dealt with by the creation of a new Health Service.

How successful was this new service in meeting the needs of the British public?

Was a common standard of care throughout the country created?

Did all medics co-operate with the new system?

Were all the hospitals run and operated smoothly?

Did the government underestimate the demands to be placed on this new service?

Main Body of Essay - Key Points/Arguments: Paragraph should focus on:

Idleness would be improved by the state aiming for full employment.

What policies did the Government introduce to improve employment?

Were they successful?

Remember, higher number of workers were needed to pay contributions to the new Social Security System.

Was this actually achieved?

Remember, to keep linking paragraphs.

Main Body of Essay - Key Points/Arguments: Paragraph should focus on:

Ignorance would be dealt with by reforming the education system.

What about children with no support or family?

How successful was the 1944 Education Act?

Were the prospects of the Working Class improved?

Was there enough schools to implement this legislation?

Did these reforms satisfy the demands of the public?

Main Body of Essay - Key Points/Arguments: Paragraph should focus on:

Squalor was be tackled through a new house-building programme and a slum clearance scheme.

What problems (lack of housing) did the new government inherit after the war?

Were they successful in dealing with these problems?

What acts were passed to deal with this shortage of housing?

Were ‘new towns’ created and the issue of overcrowding solved?

Main Body of Essay - Key Points/Arguments: Paragraph should focus on:

Take two paragraphs to focus on summarising how the reforms helped (if they did) individual groups.

Refer back to the plan to remind yourself of the individual groups.

You can provide answers to the questions/arguments you should be creating in your essay.

Have you linked paragraphs?

Have you created a line of argument and not just told a story?

Main Body of Essay - Key Points/Arguments: Paragraph should focus on:

Make sure the conclusion always refers back to the question (you should be always doing this in the main body of your essay anyway).

Make sure it does answer the question and ‘wraps’ up all the key points.

‘Despite these charges, the achievement of the Labour government 1945-51 was considerable, The NHS was the envy of the world and Labourcould justifiably claim that people were cared for ‘’from the cradle to the grave’’.

Conclusion - General Points

There you go - that is an ending for the conclusion - try to fill in the rest of the conclusion.

Conclusion - General Points

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