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Millioner av «pliktoppfyllende, middelaldrene» par som har omsorg for sine foreldre og tenåringsbarn vil bli «kronisk forfordelt» av kravene fra Storbritannias aldrende befolkning.

I rapporten «Hvor rettferdig er Storbritannia?» fra likeverds- og menneskerettighetskommisjonen (Equality and Human Rights Commission, ledet av Trevor Phillips) heter det at «The coping classes» – forstått som lovlydig, hardtarbeidende og skattebetalende middelklasse – i stadig større grad sliter med ansvaret for to generasjoner.

Et av rapportens hovedfunn er at den hvite arbeiderklassen taper konkurransen om gode jobber sammenlignet med andre etniske grupper, hvor kinesiske og indiske menn har dobbelt så stor sannsynlighet for å finne seg arbeid. Et annet funn er at arbeidsledighet blant etniske minoriteter koster nesten 8.6 milliarder pund (80.7 milliarder NOK) i året i form av velferdsytelser og tapte skatteinntekter. Halvparten av landets muslimske menn og trefjerdedeler av alle muslimske kvinner er arbeidsledige.

Videre heter det at Storbritannia har en sterk sans for toleranse og fair play, men at rasisme og religiøse fordommer øker og fiendtlighet mot innvandring har vokst:

The warning comes in a 700-page report that forms the first comprehensive survey of disadvantage and discrimination across Britain. While the country today is more tolerant than in 1970, society is still not fair for many people, it says. The economic crisis and the Government’s proposed spending cuts threaten to make inequality worse, it says. The report, How Fair is Britain?, finds:

• Progress at narrowing the pay gap between men and women has “stalled”. While there has been substantial improvement over the past 30 years, momentum has “ground to a halt”. Women working full-time earn 16.4 per cent less than men.

• The white working classes are missing out on good jobs compared with other ethnic groups, with Chinese and Indian men nearly twice as likely to find professional work.

• Unemployment among ethnic minorities costs the economy almost £8.6 billion a year in benefits and lost revenue from taxes. Half of Muslim men and three quarters of Muslim women are unemployed.

The country has a strong sense of tolerance and fair play. However, racism and religious prejudice are increasing, while hostility towards immigration has grown.

The looming crisis in care for the elderly causes the watchdog the most acute concern. Millions in the “sandwich generation” face having to look after their parents while still caring for their children, it says. Launching the report, Trevor Phillips, the commission chairman, will say today that the “spirit of sacrifice” must not be abused if families are to survive. “For families like my own, care for our elderly is not just second nature, it’s a moral duty,” he will say.

“Unless we adjust to increased longevity and the stresses of modern life we risk turning what could be one of the foundation stones of the Big Society into a burden.

The Telegraph: Britain’s coping classes at breaking point

Via Snaphanen