Amber Rudd to lodge complaint over UN’s austerity report

Rudd will say Philip Alston, the UN’s special rapporteur on extreme poverty, is biased

The work and pensions secretary Amber Rudd is planning to lodge a formal complaint with the UN about today’s damning report into austerity in Britain by Philip Alston, the UN’s special rapporteur on extreme poverty.

Rudd will argue that he is politically biased and did not do enough research. The minister is seeking guidance from the Foreign and Commonwealth Office on the best way to respond after Alston compared her department’s welfare policies to the creation of Victorian workhouses and quoted the 17th century philosopher Thomas Hobbes to warn that unless austerity is ended and welfare cuts are reversed, millions of poor Britons face lives that are “solitary, poor, nasty, brutish, and short”.

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