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How far did the Poor Law Amendment Act mark a turning point in attitudes and state provision towards the poor?

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  • Essay length: 887 words
  • Submitted: 13/01/2005
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University Degree English Legal System

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How far did the Poor Law Amendment Act mark a turning point in attitudes and state provision towards the poor?

The Poor Law Commission of 1832 marked a significant turning point in attitudes and state

provision towards the poor. The Commission gave birth to much greater knowledge of the poor, caused British society to replace their paternalistic attitude with utilitarianism, established the Poor Law Amendment Act and changed dominant class running the poverty. Therefore great reforms occurred as a result of the Poor Law Commission however, the many restrictions and flaws of the commission limit the impact it has as a turning point in attitudes and state provision towards the poor.

Before the establishment of the Poor Law Commission in 1832, the poorest members of British society were the responsibility of individual parishes and, as the poor were not the responsibility of the government and the upper-class, knowledge of the unreformed poor law was very limited. However, with the increase in demand for the abolition of the existing system , the government realised that they must understand the Old Poor Law in order to justify its abolition. After having completed the Commission a vast

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