October 17: International Day for the Eradication of Poverty

International Day for the Eradication of Poverty is observed on October 17 every year.

Key facts

  • International Day for the Eradication of Poverty seeks to raise global awareness about the problem of poverty and its role in the violation of human rights and dignity.
  • It also honors the bravery of people living in poverty and recognizes their everyday struggles.
  • 2022 marks the 30th anniversary of the International Day for the Eradication of Poverty.
  • “Dignity For All in Practice” is the theme for this year’s International Day for the Eradication of Poverty.
  • Through this theme, the United Nations urges individuals across the world to commit to the promotion of social justice, with an emphasis on human dignity, which is the basis for all fundamental rights.

Background

The International Day for the Eradication of Poverty commemorates the day in 1987 when thousands of people came together at the Trocadéro in Paris to honor victims of extreme poverty, violence, and hunger. They proclaimed that poverty is a human right violation. The following year, the Universal Declaration of Human Rights was signed in Trocadéro. The UNGA adopted the resolution declaring this day in the year 1992.

Significance

Despite various international commitments towards the eradication of poverty, currently, over 1.3 billion people suffer from multidimensional poverty, with almost 50 per cent of them being children and youth. Poverty is a multidimensional phenomenon that involves the lack of both income and the basic capability to live a dignified life. Poverty is not inevitable. It came as a result of decisions or interactions that create challenges for economically weak communities. Issues like social exclusion, structural discrimination, and disempowerment make it difficult for people to escape poverty and thrive. Last year, millions struggled because of the weakening of labor rights norms and job quality, while rich people recorded unpreceded growth of wealth. Climate crises, disasters, and environmental degradation are further exacerbating the situation.

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