Free Essay

Inequality an Dpoverty


Submitted By maeve01
Words 2400
Pages 10
The world is full of inequality, inequality exists in many areas, for example, a girl who is born in Norway is more likely live on to old age, while I that same girl was born in Sierra Leone, she would have a one in four chance of dying on her birthday, (Green, 2012) this is just a minute example of inequality in this world. It exists on the basis of, race, caste, gender, economy, health, education and lots more. It is up to the people in various countries to put an end to inequality and therefore alleviate poverty. it is believed by some economists that redistribution is the only way to make the world equal again , these economists also believe that redistribution is the role of the government (Browning, 1989) while others believe it is the role of the citizens and the government . Inequality is a major global problem which leads to loss of GDP, health, lives and others. Inequality is a cancerous growth that needs to be cut down (Gostin, 2007) in this research report will elaborate on the inequalities of the world and how it ties to poverty, using the theme of discrimination, based on race, caste and gender. It will show how discrimination leads to inequality and poverty, with the help of various case studies and examples, it will also give recommendations on how the inequality can be reduced. The global inequality shows that 80% of global health is in the hands of 15% of the "privileged." (Milanovic, 2011)

What is poverty?
Poverty is described as the thing that deprives humans of their fundamental human rights and needs. (Weebly, 2012). Poverty can also be described as an absence of wealth, health, social security and so on. Poverty is also a very complex term, therefore it is not that easy to describe therefore there are various definitions that explain poverty. It can be said that there are different types of poverty such as * Relative poverty
Defines poverty in connection with economic resources of other society members, people are said to be poor, if they fall below the basic standards of living in a given society. (UNESCO, 2013) * social exclusion
It is a label that describes what happens when an individual suffers from a combination of problems which include, unemployment, low incomes, high crime environment bad health and family breakdown that eventually link to each other and causes a major problem (BBC 2013) * absolute or extreme poverty it is the lack of even the most basic necessities such as , food , water , shelter and clothing , it is the most related to the poverty line in developing countries , extreme poverty is usually defined as earning less than $1.25 a day (Lusted , 2010)

As shown, poverty is indefinitely linked to inequality, the absence of certain rights and privileges. Poverty is all about not having power to make decisions that affect your life, and the lack of rights that you should have, as stated earlier this report will use discrimination to show just how bad inequality can be and how it is made worse without the help of the government
Inequality based on discrimination
Discrimination and racism have been a part of the world for centuries, dating as far back as … but now in the modern world, people believe that the case of racism or discrimination is almost non-existent, this isn’t the case. There is still discrimination based on gender, race, caste, ethnicity and even religion. As a result of this discrimination, people are not allowed the same rights as other people which therefore leads to a high level of inequality
As stated, inequality can be fixed due to redistribution, of assets, power, opportunities. Active citizens and effective states are also needed, this will be shown in the case studies explained below
Case studies
The first case study examined, would be the case study about The Chiquitano people of Bolivia
“On 3 July 2007, after twelve years of unremitting and often frustrating struggle, the Chiquitano people of Bolivia – numbering some 120,000 people – won legal title to the 1m-hectare indigenous territory of Monteverde in the eastern department Santa Cruz. Evo Morales, the country’s first indigenous president, and several ministers attended the ceremony. So did three elected mayors, ten local councillors (six women, four men), a senator, a congressman, and two members of the Constituent Assembly – all of them Chiquitanos.”
This piece was retrieved from: [Accessed: 28 Oct 2013]. (Green, 2011)
A brief summary about the above mentioned case study, up until the 1980s the chiquitano people were mistreated and forced to work with no pay, they also had no land rights. Even though the chiquitanos had a long history in Bolivia dating back to the days of the Jesuits, they were known for building churches.
The change in them being treated poorly came when they identified themselves as an indigenous group of people, which led to them creating their Chiquitano Indigenous Organization (OICH) which represented over 450 communities the people spurred by the migration of highly politicised mineworkers decided to organise marches in order to have their say, such as the organized march in which they went to the capital, La Paz in 1990. In order to gain national change, people must work together and form organizations and movements, as one person alone, may not be enough to make certain changes
“At another march in 2003, the Chiquitanos put forth national demands and established national alliances” (Green, 2011)
The protests eventually led to President Sánchez de Load being impeached in October 2003, thereafter everything became easier
The chiquitano people had various marches and did not stop until their demands were met, thus proving that active citizens do indeed play a part in reducing inequality. Inequality cannot only be reduced by government or the people, sometimes outside help is exactly what is needed. Such as help from organisations such as Oxfam (Green, 2011)
The second case study revolves around the women of Morocco
“In Morocco, the debate over women and family status has occupied the central stage since 1958, when the first Code of Personal Status (Mudawwana al-Ahwal al-Shakhsiyya) was published” according to Buskens 2003, 70-130as cited by Harrak, 2009). Over the years there have been ongoing reforms over it , but it only became a real issue in 1982 , when the wellbeing of women became a major subject of public debate and was therefore linked to the struggle for human rights therefore gaining global recognition (Harrak, 2009) this set up the plat form for organisations to petition , such as the l’Union de l’Action Féminine, this is the female branch of the Marxist-Leninist political party Organisation de l’Action Démocratique et Politique (OADP) (Harrack, 2009) in 1991 , they launched a national petition in which they managed to collect over one million signatures . The petition was brought up to the prime minister instead of the king thus making history ,that gender issues were brought up for discussion in the political arena rather than the religious arena. ‘(Harrack , 2009 ) their reform was not without criticism and opposition, saying that what they were doing was a disgrace to Islam in Morocco, but they continued petitioning, and gaining more attention
The King of Morocco, King Hassan II declared that the issue should be brought to him and not made a political matter as the Mudawwana was his responsibility , he made this clear in his speech ‘the “Throne and Peoples’ Revolution” on 20th August 1992” “The Mudawwana is, before anything else, my responsibility and I will shoulder my
Responsibility arising from the application or the non-application of such a code.
Therefore, you (women activists) should refer such matters to me…you should not mix up religious matters with civil and political matters…” (Harrak, 2009)
(Direct quote of the king’s speech ) In 1993 , reforms were made to the Mudawwana ,such as . The verbal consent of the bride was needed for marriage, rather than being forced into it, other points focused on were the allowing of women who had reached the age of maturity to be able to be their own guardians rather than another male , if their father was dead . The issue of polygamy and a man’s capability were also looked at .mothers were allowed to gain legal custody and guardianship of their children (Harrak, 2009)

Women’s rights in some Muslim countries are not in their best interests, in order for them to accomplish something and create a better world for themselves, they had to petition, they had to acknowledge their rights and fight for it, thereby making them active citizens who made sure their voices got heard therefore reducing the inequality between them and the men. The call for reforms led to a different governing structure in 1998 .King Hassan II asked Abderrahmane El-Youssoufi, who was a socialist leader and former exiled dissident, to form a coalition government, also known as the “alternate government” thus becoming first opposition figure to become prime minister in modern Moroccan history (Harrak, 2009) in March 1999 a proposal intended to improve of the status of women in Morocco “Plan d’action national pour l’intégration de la femme au développement” also known as the Plan for the Integration of Women in Development) which focused on improving women’s rights in Morocco. It covered four main areas, it aimed to improve literacy, make reproductive health better ,improve economic development, and instigate and follow up on the development of female empowerment (Harrak, 2009). None of this would have been possible without the Women of Morocco taking a stand to do what they believed was right
A case study on Saudi Arabia
‘Saudi Arabia abolished slavery in 1962 but the conditions of these workers are still extremely worrying; it was only in August 2013 that the Saudi government passed a draft law criminalizing domestic abuse, a purely theoretical measure since it doesn't specify the details to ensure prompt investigations on the abuses.´
(Giacalone, 2013)
This extract was taken from a case study about the migrant workers in Saudi Arabia working under inhumane conditions, where they aren’t allowed to get work unless they have a Saudi citizen sponsor, and these sponsors choose not to pay them, or let them off for leave. They are subjected to answering to the sponsors. There are cases such as, “In October 2012, Al-Watan reported that an Indonesian maid died after 18 months in hospital as a consequence of severe beating at the hands of her Saudi sponsor's son. Although the young Saudi man was allegedly responsible for the worker's death, he faced no legal consequences.´ (Giacalone, 2013) these are among the things that the migrant workers suffer in Saudi Arabia there are also cases of rape, such as “Frequent reports of rape from Nepalese workers in Saudi Arabia were a contributing factor in Nepal banning women younger than 30 from working in the Gulf states last year.” (Varia, 2008) the mistreated workers are refused medical help and it leads to a high level of suicide and example would be the “as it occurred with an Ethiopian maid who hanged herself in her employer's home in December 2012. “ (Giacalone, 2013) there are videos that show exactly how severe the cases of domestic abuse can be, the links will be inserted at the end of this report
Examples and facts of inequality around the world
Inequality is a global phenomenon, it doesn’t only have to deal with discrimination, and it can also be a geographical problem. Some facts that revolve around inequality are that one in every seven adults and one in every three children suffers from malnutrition, every five seconds a child dies of hunger in the world, even though there is fertile land for growing food. More than three hundred million people worldwide have a life expectancy below 60 years, this is a result of a poor diet and because of diseases resulting from poor diet. These are just some of the facts that are plaguing the world as a result of inequality , (,Ortiz et al.) 35 percent of the world population does not have energy and sufficient proteins in their diet thus leading to the fact that there are over 1.5 billion people in the world with anaemia, including over 5 million that are said to live I developed countries . (eng) the case of Missing women according to Duncan Green the world has a population of more women than men because of policies such as the one child policy in China therefore many female children were killed or selectively aborted . Also because women are discriminated against , it has led to a loss in workforce and therefore GDP in various countries (Green, 2011)
It is noted that only four Americans , Bill Gates, Paul Allen, Warren Buffet and Larry Ellison together possessed a few years ago a fortune equivalent to the GDP of 42 of the poorest nations, concentrated in their hands, countries with a total population of over 600 million empty stomachs and starving mouths. (Callahan , 2010)
Based on the case studies and examples , inequality was battled with the help of active citizens , and redistribution . The citizens acted upon their unjust treatments and got out of their poverty through movements , marches , petitions and most importantly a mutual understanding . Inequality is a major problem that is faced by governments all over the world and is the main reason of poverty . Discrimination is a main instigator of inequality , because people are looked down on and not given the same opportunities as others because of their background leads to a set of people who are better off and a set of people left to struggle simply because of their background

Recommendations * organisations can be formed in order to better the living conditions of the less privileged * citizens can be taught not to discriminate and that working together is for the greater good * more countries can adapt and try to achieve the eight millennium development goal set by the UN * governments and societies can set up seminars and workshops that will help with literacy problems in the country * the state can become and effective state and therefore take care of its citizens * government structures can be built for all therefore equality in certain aspects * there needs to be empowerment of women and also they should be treated equally in the workforce and be given the same opportunities as the men

Similar Documents