Poverty as a public policy concern, whether at the global, national or community level, is now widely considered to be a multidimensional problem

. Over the last few decades, new perspectives on poverty have challenged the focus on income and consumption as the defining condition of poor people. Studies of the problems of poor people and communities, and of the obstacles and opportunities to improving their situation, have led to an understanding of poverty as a complex set of deprivations. These alternative perspectives have refocused the concept of poverty as a human condition that reflects failures in many dimensions of human life – hunger, unemployment, homelessness, illness and health care, powerlessness and victimization, and social injustice; they all add up to an assault on human dignity. Strategies to eradicate poverty require not only economic growth and redistribution but also direct intervention in many areas such as expanding education, removing discrimination and securing social injustice; different types of deprivations in human lives are interrelated and reinforce one another. For example, lack of education often defines the condition of a poor person but it is also an obstacle to other important aspects of a person’s wellbeing, e.g. employment and income, good health and health care and other basic amenities such as clean water and sanitation. These are also interrelated with discrimination and lack of access to justice. INCOME POVERTY: Income is a key concept in almost all definitions and studies of poverty; however, ‘income’ is an extremely difficult concept to define and measure. The term is sometimes used loosely to refer only to the main component of monetary income for most households – that is, wages and salaries or business income. Others use the term more widely to include all receipts including lump-sum receipts and receipts that draw on the household’s capital. Much of the debate has centered on whether: • Income should include only receipts that are recurrent (that is, exclude large and unexpected, typically one – off, receipts);

• Income poverty . and having some influence over what happens in their life. January 2006 The first of annual Opportunity for all (OFA) reports in 1999 on tackling poverty and social exclusion defined poverty as follows: Poverty affects different aspects of people’s lives. Lack of income. access to good-quality health. This means that people will not have enough food or medicine and they will have poor clothes and houses. Poverty and social exclusion in Britain. Income poverty happens when a household takes in less than one US dollar per day. Some people think that poverty is about being able to buy and sell but other people think about getting a fair share of education and health care or about being given respect. and to live out their retirement years in security. should allow for the • Whether the measure of income maintenance of the value of net worth. existing when people are denied opportunities to work. Income poverty is due to people not having access to money or other assets. or extend also to those that contribute to future well-being. education and housing. David gordan and Ruth Levitas. then income poverty can result in stunted growth and early death. The best way to reduce income poverty is to encourage and support the development of effective businesses (small. and the quality of the local environment all affect people’s well-being. Because of these differences it is useful to think about two main types of poverty – they are. the Policy press University of Bristol. If people do not have any other assets like land to grow their own food.• Income should only include those components that contribute to current economic well-being. to live healthy and fulfilling lives. to learn. Different people think about poverty in different ways. medium and large) which make good use of our natural resources and talents to create wealth and jobs. The millennium survey Edited by Christina Pantazis. Our view of poverty covers all these aspects.

• Non-income poverty Leads to income poverty are:  The unemployment  Over population  Inability to meet high standards of living  Inadequate education employment opportunities  Environmental degradation  Certain economic incentives and demographic trends and Welfare Key Facts on Poverty Reduction • 27. as are 43 percent of Scheduled Tribes and 36 percent of Scheduled Caste groups • More than 90 percent of the overall workforce is employed in the informal economy. . and only 27 percent have access formal credit • 296 million people are illiterate and 233 million are undernourished • 254 per 100.000 live births is the maternal mortality rate and is an indicator not only of the quality of maternal health care services but also of the level of empowerment of women.6 percent of farmer households are in debt.5 percent of Indians live below the national income poverty line • More than 60 percent of women are chronically poor. 96 percent of women are in the informal economy • 48.

Inclusive Growth.Sources: Poverty Estimates for 2004-2005. 19972003. Volume 1. 2008. United Nations Development Programme. Report on the conditions and promotion of livelihoods in the unorganized sector. Report of the 11th Plan Working Group on Poverty Alleviation Programmes.11th Five-Year Plan 2007-2012. Maternal Mortality in India. 2006 . Planning Commission. 2006. Government of India. 2007. Office of the Registrar General and Census Commissioner. Planning Commission. National Commission for Enterprises in the Unorganized Sector (NCEUS). 2007. Human Development Report 2007/2008.

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