Priti Patel under fire for suggesting 'poverty isn't the government's fault'

Home Secretary Priti Patel visits Chessington School in Chessington, Surrey, during the General Election campaign. (Photo by Aaron Chown/PA Images via Getty Images)
Home Secretary Priti Patel has suggested that poverty isn't the government's fault (Picture: Aaron Chown/PA Images via Getty Images)

Priti Patel has come under fire after suggesting that poverty ‘isn’t the government’s fault’.

Asked about the fact that four in 10 children in parts of Barrow in Cumbria are born into poverty, the Home Secretary blamed local government and services.

Ms Patel made the comments on a visit to Barrow and Furness, where Labour won by a majority of just 209 in the 2017 general election - making it a key target for the Conservatives.

“Well it’s appalling,” she told BBC North West Tonight.

“It’s not the Government though is it? Everybody just says it’s the Government as if it’s this sort of like bland blob that you know, you can just go and blame.”

To view this content, you'll need to update your privacy settings.
Please click here to do so.

Pushed on the issue and whether she was saying that the Government isn’t responsible for poverty, Ms Patel said: “Well, it’s not, because it’s all parts of society and the structures.

“Local authorities have a role to play, education, public services, which are locally led and locally run.”


BBC apologises after Andrew Marr accuses Priti Patel of laughing

Persistent poverty affects one in five UK children – study

The comments have sparked a backlash, including by Labour’s Keir Starmer, who branded her “completely out of touch”.

He wrote: “Priti Patel is completely out of touch. I blame austerity for the rise in poverty and I blame this Tory government for austerity.”

To view this content, you'll need to update your privacy settings.
Please click here to do so.

Shadow Chancellor John McDonnell tweeted: "Priti Patel's claims in this video are yet another example of the Tory Government’s cruelty.

"Local Government has suffered enormously from vicious Tory cuts. Of course we can blame the Tory Government for poverty."

It’s not the first time Priti Patel has come under fire. The Home Secretary recently faced criticism for blocking a rescue operation to bring British orphans home from Syria.

---Watch the latest videos from Yahoo UK---

Our goal is to create a safe and engaging place for users to connect over interests and passions. In order to improve our community experience, we are temporarily suspending article commenting