So I've worked for almost all of my adult life and only been out of work for a couple of weeks. I guess I'm lucky that way, but then I've worked my backside off to get to where I am today. I've chased jobs, I've worked weekends, I've done all nighters. And whilst I've got a nice little flat, a wife who loves me and two beautiful boys, I feel that I'm being treated unfairly with the UK benefits system.
Now don't get me wrong. I'm proud to live in a country that cares for its underprivileged men, women and children. There are plenty of people out there who are still working hard, raising children, but still can't get enough pay to live on. They then rightly get top-ups from the government. It's so good that people come to this country specifically for it - but then that's another discussion.
The type of people that I'm talking about are the one's that don't work, and have no plans to. The one's that get everything paid for them - and say they 'deserve' it for having another child. The one's that get 2 and 3 bed houses - all paid for by the benefits system. My wife and I are just saving up for a new house as we don't really have enough space in our flat. We both work hard - my wife looking after the boys whilst working - and myself travelling an hour each way for a decent wage. But because we work hard we are above the level where we can get any help from the Government at all. Yet other people get moved into bigger houses - because they had more children - all paid for by the benefits system. Surely they should only get a bigger place if they start, at the very least, part-time work? "But I've got my children to look after..." - well so has my wife - and we don't get our mortgage paid for us?
And it doesn't stop with housing? Our boys are in Nursery now for one afternoon a week which we have to pay through the nose for - whilst other parents get funded Nursery places (15 hours a week) from 2 years - because they are on low incomes or don't work at all? I'm not saying they shouldn't get it - all kids should have a great education - but why can't our children get it free? Just because we work hard it feels like we're being punished - as we couldn't, and this is the funny bit, AFFORD to put them in from age two for that many hours a week!? How is that a fair system? We work hard, pay our taxes, and yet our children won't get the benefit of an extra years education?
I'm almost getting to the point where I'm going to give up work - and yes I'll be short of money - but not THAT short as everything would be paid for me? But I just couldn't do it. I need to work. To be useful to society. To do my bit. To be the best British citizen that I can be.
Rant over. ;)