I want to live in Sheffield that’s fair and equal for everyone

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I returned to my home city of Sheffield last year, after being away from Britain for nearly a decade.

I love Sheffield and I am proud to call it home but in the last 10 years, while small pockets have been doing OK, I was sad to see the conditions in much of the city.

According to the Sheffield Fairness Commission, 20 per cent of Sheffielders are now living in poverty.

I know times have been hard, but the pain has not been shared fairly amongst all in the country.

A few seem quite untouched by austerity, while at the same time Save the Children predict record child poverty in the UK by 2020.

When the UN measure the Human Development Index for countries around the world, they look at things like employment stability, education opportunities, access to healthcare, child welfare.

How can it be OK that things that are, and have been, so easily sacrificed for an economic growth, the fruits of which seem to be mostly enjoyed by a tiny minority.

How can we accept a statistic that tells us that one in five of us in this city is living in poverty.

This cannot be right or fair, and it certainly cannot lead to a stable, happy society.

But what to do about it? I hope that more and more of us start seeking and demanding something different, something better.

I hope that we don’t just accept that “to those that have, more shall be given...” while greater and greater numbers of families struggle to keep their heads above water.

I made the decision to come back to England, and to Sheffield but I also want to live in a society that is much fairer and more equal that the one we have.

Can I have both of these things? I hope so.

Angela Handforth

Clumber Road, Sheffield, S10