Change the World by Changing Poverty
Poverty affects many people “with over three billion living on less than two dollars and fifty cents a day” (Shah). The majority of the parents living in poverty are unable to provide for themselves and let alone able to feed their children, send them to school, get them the medical attention they need, or even provide them with shelter (“What is Poverty? ”). Since parents can not properly provide for their kids, it causes “twenty-two thousand children to die each day due to poverty”.
South Asia and sub-Saharan Africa are the areas most affected by poverty even though it is in every continent, country, and city around the world (Shah).
This large poverty problem is a global issue that could be changed into a much smaller one, or even an inexistent problem, by implementing a few different solutions. One way to end poverty is by investing in children. This means to mainly focus on their education, especially when they’re young. Boteach talks about how President Obama has an idea to create a “universal pre-K that would provide millions of parents with a quality, reliable place for their children to thrive, enabling them to work more or steadier hours to bring additional income into the family, as well as create greater economic opportunity for their children in the long term”.
In doing this, it would help these children obtain a proper education that can lower poverty at a high rate since children are the ones most affected by it. With the correct education they can grow up and learn to live a life of non-poverty unlike their parents who may have not of had the chance to obtain a proper education (Boteach). Children living in poverty are unable to control their life. They’re vulnerable because they’re at the will of others and they sometimes demean themselves to make ends meet (“Invest in Services”). So they deserve to be invested in for their future and their well being.
Investing in children can reduce the poverty rate in tomorrow’s world. Another way to end poverty would be to make a world-wide minimum wage law. Why? People live in poverty mostly because they can not make enough money to support themselves or their family. Very rarely is it because people are lazy or don’t have a job (Shah). Why is there still so many people living in poverty if they have jobs? Poverty is mainly caused by too low of minimum wages because “the leading cause of hunger and homelessness is low-paying jobs” (“Universal Living Wage”).
Most countries do already have a minimum wage, but they are usually not high enough to support a family in today’s world. The United States is a good example of this because “under current law, a full-time worker with two children earning the minimum wage will still raise his or her family in poverty” (Boteach). This is unacceptable because most employers will pay their workers minimum wage if they can get away with it. And anyone working deserves to not have to live in poverty no matter where they live or what job they do. So there needs to be a world-wide, minimum wage law made.
It needs to state that every country has to make a high enough minimum wage that would not allow anyone to live in poverty if they worked a normal forty-hour week. They need to be able to afford essential clothing, nutrition, utilities, medical care, and shelter (“Universal Living Wage”). So making a world-wide minimum wage law would help reduce poverty. Making sure everyone has access to the proper energy is another solution to end poverty. The people living in third-world countries that are poverty stricken, is mainly due to not having access to energy needed to live day in and day out.
Without them having access to the proper electricity they have to work much harder in their lives because they do not have access to running water, lights, heat, refrigeration, air-conditioning, plumbing, stoves, and many other things that most people take for granted. They also struggle not having the proper energy because it affects their ability to get a decent education or earn a nice living or even just trying to keep themselves healthy is an everyday struggle for them.
It is physically impossible and too expensive to make sure every square inch of this earth and everyone has access to electricity though. So the solution would be to work with communities to develop renewable energy technologies. These technologies would use natural resources such as water, wind, sun and wastes so they could work in even the smallest or most remote communities and not cost very much to build or maintain (“Powerful Solutions to Poverty”). Making sure everyone has access to the proper energy needed to live life easily would really help reduce poverty.
Investing in children would help end poverty in tomorrow’s world. If children were given the chance to get a proper education it would create a greater economic opportunity for everyone in the long term. For example, “every year that we keep children in poverty, it costs our nation, United States, half a trillion dollars in lost productivity, poorer health and increased crime,” so if children got a proper education, it would boost the economy, raise health, end a lot of crime and reduce the costs by trillions (“Ending Child Poverty”).
It would also lead to outcomes such as better high school graduation rates, higher worker productivity, and lower rates of violent crime that revenue seven dollars in savings for every one dollar invested upfront in children’s early education (Boteach). This is a realistic solution because The Early Learning Challenge Fund is investing one billion dollars per year in challenge grants to build high-quality early learning systems for children from birth through age five (“Investing in Early Childhood to Reduce Child Poverty”).
Investing in children’s education from an early age can help reduce poverty to a lower rate. Making a world-wide minimum wage law would reduce poverty drastically. If they raised the minimum wages and indexed them to the cost of living, it would increase the wages of millions of low-wage workers, and create demand in the economy for goods and services as workers spend their increased wages in local businesses (Boteach). For example, if the United States were to raise “the minimum wage to fifteen dollars an hour” then that “would inject about four hundred and fifty billion dollars into the economy each year”.
It would give more purchasing power to many poor and lower/middle class Americans, so therefore stimulate buying, producing, and hiring. Also, the Economic Policy Institute has done studies that prove raising the minimum wage to fifteen dollars would benefit sixty-four percent of the workforce, eighty-one million people, and therefore their families would no longer have to live in poverty and then they would be able to buy more clothing, new cars, and food from the nation’s businesses (Hanauer). Imagine if every country made a minimum wage and made it high enough to do the same as if it would for the United States.
Every country’s economy would be booming and many people could live a better life therefore benefiting the countries in several ways. People would no longer need to use tax payer programs such as food stamps or Medicaid, and then the countries could use that tax money to get out of debt or for other reasons. The United States alone could save a lot of money and get out of some debt since “according to the Congressional Budget Office, the federal government spent three hundred sixteen billion dollars on programs designed to help the poor in 2012” (Hanauer).
This is a realistic solution to poverty. Many minimum wage paying jobs are employed by franchises that make billions of dollars a year and still pay their workers nothing. These franchises and companies can and should have to pay their workers a higher minimum wage. Businesses would be responsible to pay the increase to their workers but it is their responsibility to employ and pay them fairly. Making a high, world-wide minimum wage law would help end poverty. Making sure everyone has access to the proper energy is a good solution to end poverty.
Having the proper energy resources is important to any area because a “modern energy supply is foundational for economic development” (Pielke). This is a very realistic solution. In most poverty stricken areas it is impossible to get electricity. So the solution is to work with communities to develop renewable energy technologies. The organization Practical Action is a charity that does just this. They are funded completely by donations and have worked with poor women, men, and children all over the world helping make their lives better.
So if they got enough donations, they could end poverty in many third world countries that don’t have the access to electricity. They could do this because of their renewable energy technologies that they invent, build, and distribute. They are always looking for ways to better their inventions and ways to help out the people more (“Powerful Solutions to Poverty”). Giving everyone access to the proper energy they need can reduce poverty rates. Poverty is a sad thing because it affects every part of these people’s life.
It affects their health, learning, jobs, raising their families, and just everyday activities that should be simple. That is why there is a great need to do something to end poverty. Whether the world works together to invest in children and their education, or to make a high, world-wide minimum wage, or to make sure everyone has access to proper energy, the world will have less poverty. Everyone needs to stand and work together to make these solutions work. If everyone acts on them all, we could end poverty completely, so take a stand today and end the suffering for millions of adults and children all over the globe.