Feb-01 4:05pm SBS-TV: Michael Mosley – Queen Victoria’s Slum

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Things go from bad to worse as Britain is gripped by an economic depression in the early 1880s.

As unemployment jumps from two to 10 percent, some of the men find themselves out of work. The shortage work shortage in the slum is exacerbated by an influx of new immigrants: descendants of Jews from Russia and Eastern Europe and English workers from the countryside. Space is now at even more of a premium, and work is scarce, pushing up the rent and causing outrage. With hungry mouths to feed, some of the moms go in search of poverty relief – and encounter the little provisions available to Victorians in desperate straits. Qualifying for extra food and funds is hard, and their morals, parenting and housekeeping is questioned. The slum is reaching breaking point.

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