Created during and after the Second World War, the British Welfare State seemed to promise welfare for all, but, in its original form, excluded millions of disabled people. This book examines attempts in the subsequent three decades to reverse this exclusion. It is the first to contextualise disability historically in the welfare state and under each government of the period. It looks at how disability policy and perceptions were slow to change as a welfare issue, which is very timely in today’s climate of austerity. It also provides the first major analysis of the Disablement Income Group, one of the most powerful pressure groups in the period and the 1972 Thalidomide campaign and its effect on the Heath government. Given the recent emergence of the history of disability in Britain as a major area of research, the book will be ideal for academics, students and activists seeking a better understanding of the topic.
Jameel Hampton is a lecturer at Liverpool Hope University. He was an Andrew W. Mellon Postdoctoral Fellow at the Society, Work and Development Institute of the University of the Witwatersrand, South Africa. He has lectured in history at the University of Regina, Saskatchewan, Canada.
Foreword by Nicholas Timmins;
The Old Regime: Provision before the Welfare State;
Promotional Welfare, 1948-63;
The Emergence of the General Classes, 1964-9;
Cinderella of the Welfare State: Legislation for the General Classes, 1970-2;
The Final Days: Disability at the End of the Welfare State, 1973-9;
The Last Waltz: Epilogue;
Summary and Conclusions, 1948-79.
"For the first time Hampton shows how disabled people, neglected by the post-war welfare state, changed things from the 1960s by campaigning, like other excluded groups, achieving inclusive reforms in the 1970s." Patricia Thane, Kings College London