Social mobility is a great aspect in a society. It helps to get mobility and interactions between the people dwelling in the society.
So what is social mobility? It is actually the mobility of status of a person in a society. Let’s say for example: a daily wage earner has a particular status in the society. Now this wage earner becomes a teacher. This will increase his status high. This change in status of a person in a society is called social mobility. A society having a positive social mobility is always ahead of all other societies.
Social mobility in the UK
United Kingdom has a very stagnant social mobility since around 2014. This is because of its increasing inequality which has now entrenched from a child’s birth till it’s work life. Currently in Britain, the system is like if you are born privileged or high class, you may continue to live the whole life in a privileged way. You will get benefits and opportunities very easily either in the corporate world or from the government. But if you are born disadvantaged, then you have to remain so for a long period of time or you may have many types of barriers to cross to achieve success.
About the social mobility commission of UK
The Social Mobility Commission of the UK was established during the president-ship of David Cameron along with the then labour minister Alan Milburn as it’s chairman.
All the commissioners of this commission quit in the year 2018 due to Theresa May’s lack of action regarding the stagnancy of the social mobility. Martina Milburn became the new chairman of this commission after this mass resignation and she then reframed the commission and appointed around 12 new other commissioners.
Disadvantages faced by the underprivileged
The problems faced by the disadvantaged section of the people due to social immobility actually led to the set up of the Social Mobility Commission. Thus the main task of this commission is to eradicate and create measures to decrease all such problems which arise due to lack of social mobility or inequality prevailing in the society. Some of the disadvantages or problems faced by the underprivileged are
- Getting a professional occupation largely depends on the occupation or status of the person’s parents.
- Income earned in the same job is different for the privileged and the underprivileged.
- Working women are paid less than the male colleagues and also people are discriminated on the basis of class, ethnic values and gender.
- Advancements in technology creates risk in low wages workers to lose their jobs and further ingrain the disparities.
Methods taken to improve social mobility
The commission took action regarding the defects of the social mobility system. Some of the proposals put forward by them to the government are:
- To expand free childcare in England by spreading it further for disadvantaged families.
- To expand the additional funding for poor students who want to pursue higher education.
- To pay a voluntary living wage to all employees and workers which include even cleaning staff and caterers.