This book examines key relationships between material circumstances and crime, and analyzes the areas of social policy – in particular social security and labour market policy – that are most important in terms of dealing with inequality at the lower end of the income hierarchy. It seeks to explain why inequality is linked to offending behaviour and the evidence underpinning explanations for this, and looks in detail at the relationship between offending and anti-social behaviour and its management through social policy interventions.
Crime and Inequality draws upon both criminological and social policy approaches to understand this vital relationship, moving beyond criminological approaches which often fail to analyse the way the state attempts to manage poor material circumstance, offending and anti-social behaviour through social policy.
The main aims of the book are threefold: to draw upon the disciplines of both criminology and social policy to understand the relationship between crime and inequality; to provide an in-depth analysis of those aspects of social policy that have a bearing on the context, management and punishment of offending behaviour; to examine government crime and anti-social behaviour policies in the context of social security and labour market policies, and to identify the tensions that have resulted from attempts to address social justice issues while also making individuals responsible for their actions.
1. Introduction. Crime, Inequality and Social Policy. Criminalising Social Policy?. Inequality, Poverty and Social Exclusion 2. Crime and Inequality. Introduction. Inequalities in Contemporary Society. Young People: Particularly Disadvantaged. Crime and Inequality. Conclusion 3. Young Men. Introduction. The Problem for Young Men. The Problem with Young Men. Men, Crime and Unemployment in Policy. Not in Education, Employment and Training (NEET). Tackling the Unemployment of Young Men. Conclusion 4. Parenting and Anti-social Behaviour. Introduction. Families, Anti-social Behaviour and the 'Parenting Deficit'. Parenting and Anti-social Behaviour. Parenting, Anti-social Behaviour and Criminal Justice Policy. Parenting, Anti-social Behaviour and Social Policy. Parenting, Material Context and Gender. Parenting, Anti-social Behaviour and State Welfare. Conclusion 5. Women, Crime and Inequality. Introduction. Women and Inequality. Women, Crime and Poverty. Breeding delinquents? Lone Mothers and Role Models. Getting Lone Mothers into Paid Work. Lone Mothers and Paid Work: Rationalities and Consistencies. Lone Mothers and Policy: Reproducing the Material Context of Offending. Conclusion. 6. Crime, Inequality and Ethnicity.Introduction. Inequality and Ethnicity. Connecting Inequality, Crime and Ethnicity. Uprising, Culture and Material Conditions. Conclusion. 7. Street Homelessness and Crime.Introduction. Street Homelessness and Crime. Rough Sleepers as Victims of the Crimes of the 'Respectable'. Vindictiveness, Relative Deprivation and the Undeserving Poor. Tackling Rough Sleeping. Conclusion. 8. Financial Penalties: Punishing Poor People.Introduction. Sentencing and Economic Inequalities. Financial Penalties and Inequality. Relating Fines to Income. Fines and Social Security Benefits. Community Punishments and Social Security Benefits. Conclusion. 9. Conclusion.The Boundaries of Academic Disciplines. Inconsistencies and Tensions. The Importance of Paid Work. Crime, Social Policy and 'Free' Market Capitalism. Social Divisions, Crime and Inequality. Crime, Inequality and Social Policy into the Future