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  • Writer's pictureRiddhima Mehta


What is poverty? Poverty is the state in which an individual or a community lacks the financial resources and necessities for a basic standard of living. Its consequences include malnutrition and hunger; insufficient access to necessities like education, health and other public services as well as social discrimination and isolation.

As per new studies, poverty in India has reduced from approximately 15 per cent in 2011 to 7.0 per cent in 2017 – the fastest pace the country has ever seen. Before the pandemic, approximately 10% of the world's population lived in severe poverty, unable to meet even the most basic needs such as health, education, access to clean drinking water, sanitation and nutrition, to name a few. More than 160 million individuals were at risk to continue to live in severe poverty till 2030.

Although there are many factors in an economy that can lead to poverty, one of the most common causes is unemployment. Unemployment is a major issue worldwide, with the overall number of unemployed people approaching 1.1 billion mostly constituting ten most populated countries. The most obvious answer of how unemployment causes poverty is through lack of income. Without jobs, people face a lack of income and families are left without the most necessities.

The ongoing pandemic has left unforgettable scars across the world. According to a UN survey, the pandemic’s disruptions have transformed areas with the highest economic activities into the worst affected zones, resulting in unemployment and poverty. Unemployment during the pandemic has reportedly affected 2.7 billion people worldwide and nations with a large, informal workforce will be required to support the labour market to reduce unemployment.

With current levels of unemployment increasing, the likelihood of future poverty, burden of labour will fall on future generations.

Poverty and unemployment go hand-in-hand and it is crucial to remember this while finding solutions to these problems. To eliminate poverty, communities, governments, organizations, civic groups and the private sector must work together to improve living conditions for the unemployed.

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