Ruth Patrick's research condemns scroungers hype as urban myth

The study by the School of Sociology and Social Policy followed 22 claimants from the city between 2011 and 2013.

Research conducted by postgraduate research student Ruth Patrick highlights the misperception of people on benefits.

Research was conducted by the School between 2011 and 2013, with Patrick acting as research team leader.

Claimants fell into three distinct categorises: young jobseekers aged between 18 and 25; disabled people likely to be affected by the migration of Incapacity Benefit claimants onto Employment and Support Allowance; and single parents moving from Income Support onto Jobseeker’s Allowance.

Each member was interviewed three times, with finding highlighting that “many had a plan to find jobs while others underlined just how difficult it can be to make ends meet on the dole”.

Patrick was quoted “This is yet another challenge to the myth that benefit claimants are lazy and unwilling to work. It also shows the prevailing narrative about welfare only serves to stigmatise and exclude out-of-work benefit claimants who frequently want to work and are often already contributing to society as carers and volunteers”.

The research findings have been published in the Journal of Social Policy.

The full article is available to read online.