One might study the writings of Charles Dickens, and come up with similar observations.
Fagin’s gang of kids needed him because his den was a level above the gutter, he needed them to bring in the loot.
google “the stews of London’, to read about the overcrowding of the 19th c, and rapacious landlords. We are heading back there because city property is becoming less and less affordable and available
Just as much an abuse as physical violence.
The city needs poor people to run its services, but is unwilling to pay a wage to live in the city