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What will be the C of E’s index of deprivation?

20 February 2015


From the Revd Francis Ballinger

Sir, - While many of us would applaud a "bias to the poor", I am disturbed by the idea of "redistribution to deprived areas" without a clear idea of how "deprived" is defined, and how redistributed funds would be used.

Many of the "official" ways of defining a deprived area are based on census analysis, with assumptions, about ethnicity, for example, which do not necessarily reflect the reality of life in an area. Most also fail to take account of any "pockets" smaller than 600 people. Many projects arise in "deprived" areas without appropriate research, and not in others because local people do not make appropriate applications.

Is it not time to revisit Faith in the City and Faith in the Countryside to give a clearer picture of the reality of for Britain's poor, and be much clearer about what churches can do, starting "bottom-up" rather than "top-down"?

4 Broxburn Road,
Warminster BA12 8EX

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