Table of Contents
Poverty remains one of the crucial problems of humanity. Many people in the world suffer from food and water shortage, while a small proportion of rich people lives in luxury and enjoys sophisticated achievements of modern science and technology (Abramsky, 2013). The discrimination on income principle becomes evident in many parts of the world. Globalization has led to the division into industrial and developing countries. New generations grow with the assurance that money can solve any problem.
Market mechanisms do not always correspond with the moral norms that define fair distribution of income. There is a contradiction between the economic efficiency and ethical justice. Mixed economy can smooth the inequality of distribution through government intervention (Abramsky, 2013).
The essay focuses on the problem of eliminating poverty at the global and national level. It reveals the importance of international and states’ regulations for provision of fair goods redistribution and social security.
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The Definition of Poverty
There are various definitions of poverty and ways of its estimation. There is an approach that distinguishes relevant and absolute poverty. The developed countries have strong middle class, and even the poorest layers of population can decently live on welfare. In the developing countries, there are people who cannot provide themselves and their families with the sufficient amount of food, water, and elementary clothes. For example, poor people in Canada differ from those in Laos (Dowling, 2009). The first ones have social guarantees and encouraging environment, while the second have to survive in inhuman conditions.
In many countries, the definition of poverty line corresponds with the minimum wage. In the nineteenth century, scientists first proposed to calculate the poverty line based on the family budgets (Zhuang, 2011). They were the first who introduced a criterion of absolute poverty. Scholars associated satisfaction of basic needs of an individual with maintenance of a certain level of social activity and health. Economists and social scientists made a significant contribution to the study of problems of poverty. They started the discussion of recognition or denial of the need for state intervention in the solution of the problem of poverty and the extent of such intervention (Zhuang, 2011).
Over the past thirty years, many alternative theories on poverty have developed. They influenced the formation of social policies to combat this social evil. An empirical Leiden definition of the poverty line showed people’s perception of a sufficient minimum income (Dowling, 2009). The development of cross-cultural communication and process of globalization in many spheres of human life have led to a significant shift in assessment of poverty levels. First of all, it has become the concern of the global society. Secondly, new technologies allow calculating and controlling the levels of the problem more precisely. Finally, migration and international tourism revealed the essence of difference between social standards in the developed countries and countries of the third world (Dowling, 2009).
Important non-economic aspects of poverty include basic human needs for self-realization, participation in public life, clean air and environment, security of home and freedom of transportation. This approach reveals the concept of relative poverty. Relative poverty shows the accepted standards of living in a society within a definite period. A specially designed index of quality of life measures non-economic needs (Dowling, 2009).
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State’s Intervention upon Eliminating Poverty
Income and purchasing capacity are the determinants of duration of life and elements of economic recovery. Large domestic market is a powerful stimulus to support local producers. That is why any state should strive to strengthen the middle class and take care of the most vulnerable layers of people, such as the elderly population and children (Agola & Awange, 2014).
Eliminating poverty is an integral part of state regulation in the field of social policy. The concept implies not only low levels of income and consumption, but also a low level of education and health of population.
There are universal factors that affect the dynamics of development of this negative phenomenon. They include the unemployment rate, the amounts of social transfers, income and living standards, dynamics of change in the consumer price index and military-political situation in the country.
An important objective of social policy is to identify the barriers to access to social protection and social services for population (Agola & Awange, 2014). The current system of identification and social support for poor families needs reconsideration. Poor people should be provided not with the funds but with opportunities to rehabilitate their functionality in the society. Numerous benefits, privileges, and other types of assistance are inadequate and need adaptation to the new conditions of economy.
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The first step in eliminating poverty is to build the typology of poor families and determine their target groups (Green, 2008). Social workers have to analyze the causes of poverty in the context of these groups. Inspectors test families on the basis of total family income and value of personal property. Only simultaneous compliance with these two conditions may be considered sufficient grounds to apply for social assistance (Green, 2008).
Any government should rationally choose between the scale of programs for redistribution of income to fight poverty and programs to stimulate economy, employment, and budgetary expenditures. Eliminating and reduction of poverty is a question of national importance and dignity and it needs a two-sided approach.
There are universal ways of eliminating poverty. Governors should develop a comprehensive strategy and improve poor social groups’ access to productive resources and infrastructure. Rich people have to find the ways for strengthening and expanding social protection for vulnerable categories of people.
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Overcoming of absolute poverty is in ensuring of productive employment and increase in labor efficiency. Educated people would earn and buy enough and thus support themselves and their families. Size of the salary earned serves as a guarantee against poverty. The state’s role is to create market conditions for strengthening the competitiveness of national economy by ensuring the competitiveness of enterprises. It is important to implement necessary industrial policies, provide the appropriate adaptation of educational system, and protection of domestic producers.