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Business leaders are fighting to end the stigma attached to business owners seeking help from the welfare state when a venture goes wrong. Experts in business say that far from hindering the economy, the welfare state actually encourages enterprise.

The comments were sparked following a backlash against a moving speech from Rory Weal, aged 16. Rory was speaking at the Labour party conference to defend the welfare state, which had offered help and support when his father’s business failed. Following his father’s bankruptcy and ultimate repossession of their home, Rory says that the welfare state kept his “entire wellbeing”. However, criticism followed the speech, with Rory being accused of hypocrisy.

Experts and business leaders have fought back to defend the welfare state, saying that the benefits system offers support to business owners who are experiencing difficulties and also new opportunities to jobseekers who are looking for a chance to start their own business, including the New Enterprise Allowance. Andrew Cave from the Federation of Small Businesses said:

“There is a stigma throughout society about having to go on welfare and that’s something that business owners might feel as well. But it is quite clearly a stage that a lot of business owners will have gone through. When you have a recession there’s then a peak in business start-ups- a lot of people will use benefits as a stepping stone to what they have always wanted to do.”

The business culture in the United States views experience of failure or even bankruptcy, as part of gaining insight during the process of learning.

About The Author

Lee Murphy

MAAT and ICPA accountant, with a passion for making accountancy and bookkeeping accessible. Other interests include cloud-based software development for web and mobile access, keeping fit, reading, and entrepreneurship.

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