EU is fighting with poverty

84 million Europeans live at risk of poverty, which is about 17% of the population. People living in poverty have less than 60% of average national household incomes.

Living in poverty means not being able to pay the rent, mortgage or utility bills, buy food and clothing. People who are poor also have to cope with limited access to education, a lack of access to health care etc. The most alarming is that about 19 million children live in poverty across the EU.

  • EU has been developing a strategy which seeks to eradicate poverty. The goal is to provide a framework which help member states implement their own actions to deal with poverty and social exclusion. The EU has developed a plan to help member states deliver active inclusion policies. Active inclusion aims to help marginalized people off the dole queue while providing adequate levels of social provision for those who cannot work. The EU also promotes the development of common indicators and the ex-change of good practice so that policy makers can better understand the issues and find out what works best in terms of combating poverty.
  • As well as raising public awareness about poverty and social exclusion, the European Year promises to provide extra impetus to the actions of the EU and its partners.
  • In addition, the European Social Fund (ESF) spends €10 billion a year on projects across the EU to boost the employment prospects of excluded groups. The ESF provides training and education opportunities to the likes of disabled people, older workers and the long-term unemployed – often in very deprived areas.

2 thoughts on “EU is fighting with poverty

  1. I have never realised that so many Europeans live in poverty, but I think that one of the most important things to reduce poverty is to improve the social system and unemployment situation. Unemployment is a key factor of people being at a risk of poverty. 40% of people who are unemployed are at-risk-of poverty compared to employed people, where only 8% are at-risk-of poverty. On the other hand, if one considers the overall breakdown of people over 18 who are at-risk-of-poverty more of them are either at work (28%), retired (27%) or otherwise inactive (29%) than actually unemployed (15%). The at-risk-of poverty rate for those in work in the EU is 8%. Thus, while a job is a key route out of a misery, not all jobs pay enough to actually lift someone out of poverty. In that case the social system should moderate the situation.

  2. I am not really shocked by hearing those numbers. We have the financial crisis and the high unemployment rates as for example in Spain. Some countries are for example even raising the taxes. So you can expect that some people who lost their job will not be able to pay the rent, mortgage or utility bills, buy food and clothing. So they’ll live in poverty. Others who have a job may not get paid well enough. So I agree with anette, we have to improve the social system. Because having a job doesn’t mean it can lift you out of the misery.


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