Concept

Liberal welfare reforms

Summary
The Liberal welfare reforms (1906–1914) were a series of acts of social legislation passed by the Liberal Party after the 1906 general election. They represent the emergence of the modern welfare state in the United Kingdom. The reforms demonstrate the split that had emerged within liberalism, between emerging social liberalism and classical liberalism, and a change in direction for the Liberal Party from laissez-faire traditional liberalism to a party advocating a larger, more active government protecting the welfare of its citizens. The historian G. R. Searle argued that the reforms had multiple causes, including "the need to fend off the challenge of Labour; pure humanitarianism; the search for electoral popularity; considerations of National Efficiency; and a commitment to a modernised version of welfare capitalism." By implementing the reforms outside the English Poor Laws, the stigma attached to claiming relief was also removed. During the 1906 general election campaign, neith
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