Eradicating poverty not question of charity but of justice: UN chief

UNITED NATIONS (APP):UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres has stressed the fundamental connection between eradicating poverty and upholding equal rights for all in a message commemorating the International Day for the Eradication of Poverty.

“Let us remember that ending poverty is not a matter of charity but a question of justice,” the UN Chief said.

He said that since the day was first marked 25 years ago, “nearly one billion people have escaped poverty, thanks to political leadership, inclusive economic development and international cooperation.”

He cited that 700 million people are still being left behind and are unable to meet their basic daily needs.

“Every year, disasters push millions of people around the world into poverty,” the UN chief said, while speaking at UN Headquarters. “More than ever, we can see the urgency of climate action and efforts to build resilient societies.”

“The deprivations that people living in poverty endure every day remind us that there is a fundamental connection between eradicating extreme poverty and upholding the equal rights of all people.”

Eradicating poverty in all its forms and dimensions is embodied in Goal 1 of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, which aims to foster social protection systems for all. This year’s theme, Coming together with those furthest behind to build an inclusive world of universal respect for human rights and dignity underscores the connection between extreme poverty and human rights. Specifically, emphasizing that people living in poverty are disproportionately affected by many human rights violations.

In his remarks at UN Headquarters to mark the 25th Commemoration of the International Day, Guterres pointed out that poverty is not inevitable. “It is not a natural state of being or occurrence. It is most often the outcome of choices that societies have made. Today we must choose to build a fair globalization that creates opportunities for all.”

“Inclusive growth supported by economic and social policies that empower people and provide equal opportunities make the difference.”