The latest life expectancy statistics from the Office for National Statistics are a truly grim indictment of the UK's extreme inequality. Whilst being one of the richest countries in the world we have managed to contrive a growing health gap between rich and poor, an increasing north-south divide and an average life expectancy in the poorest performing areas that is worse than Lebanon, a country beset by war and strife for decades. You can see further comments from us on this in The Sun, the Daily Express and the Daily Telegraph.
People in the UK are being deprived of years of life in the midst of plenty. It is hard to imagine a more fundamental abuse of human rights than to cruelly and arbitrarily accept different lengths of life for newborn babies depending on their parental income and postcode.
As shown in The Spirit Level, inequality compounds the already steep social gradient that exists in our nation's health such that we do so much worse than more equal countries. This is why it isn't enough for governments just to focus on the alleviation of the conditions of the poorest. We know that the gap between the rich and the rest of us has to be reduced if we are to make real progress with all the health and social problems that so disfigure our country.
Inequality is not inevitable. It is a result of policy choices and with your help we can affect the policies that are chosen. Please join our campaign for a fairer, more equal UK. You can make a donation, campaign in your local area or just join our mailing list and tell your friends, family and colleagues about us. Thank you!
Bill Kerry, Supporters and Local Groups Manager