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Just about managing

22 November 2016

Image of Just about managing report cover The UK government has said it wants to make life easier for people who are 'just about managing [PDF 480 kb]'. These are individuals and families that are not rich, but also not the poorest in society, and who—despite mostly being in work—find day-to-day life a struggle.

There’s been a lot of talk about the economics of this group: where these families fall in the income distribution, how their wages have risen or fallen, and what local and global factors are responsible for these pressures.

But what does life feel like as a family that’s just managing? What problems do just managing households encounter in the course of a week, month, or year, that knock them for six? And what aspects of life make things harder than they need to be?

Each year, the Citizens Advice network helps 700,000 working people with their problems, face to face or over the phone. Last year, our dedicated consumer helpline also dealt with 600,000 enquiries and our website had 36 million visits.

This work shows us, day in and day out, the problems people face. More than that, it helps us identify ways we can solve these problems to make life easier.

In 'Just about managing' [PDF 480 kb]we use our data to explore the biggest practical problems that stand out for people who are just about managing. We describe the problems and suggest some policy changes that would help.