1. Over 60% of the British public believe there is poverty in the UK and that it has risen in the last 10 years.
2. 58% of people think it is extremely important that a democracy protects its citizens against poverty. That is considered more important than media freedom or political parties offering clear alternatives to one another.
3. Benefits are believed to be an important part of addressing poverty – for some groups – and are not seen as generous.
4. 56% of people do not think unemployment benefits are enough to live on when told how much they are (although this is down from 68% in 2000).
5. For unemployed people work is seen as the priority:
49% think that unemployment benefits should be cut.
Over half think that unemployment benefits are too high and discourage work.
Over half think that most unemployed people could find a job if they really wanted to.
6. But this survey and other research suggest that people also think that low-paid work doesn’t pay enough to live on. The survey report authors suggest this is why people believe that benefits which are too low to live on can still discourage work.
7. For some groups, there is strong support for increases in benefits:
Low-income working parents (59%)
Disabled people (54%).
8. And more people say now than in 2011 that the Government should increase spending on welfare benefits for the poor, even if it means higher taxes (up from 28% to 36%).