A comparative analysis of Poverty in the UK and Mexico
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A comparative analysis of Poverty in the UK and Mexico Within this assignment I am going to look at the issue of poverty and how it affects those in the developed countries and the developing ones aswell, I will look at the different types of poverty and how the different definitions effect the way in which we look at how the definitions affect how we perceive those people. "The fight against poverty stands a good chance only when children are freed from exploitation, violence and abuse. Unfortunately there is no quick-fix solution: a child cannot be immunized against abuse. But there is something that can be done. We can begin by ensuring that all children live in a strong protective environment." (http://www.unicef.org/sowc05/english/povertyissue4.html) Poverty in childhood is a direct cause for poverty in adulthood. When looking at poverty there are those who look at it in the terms of absolute poverty, this is when "they do not have the resources to maintain human life" (Haralmbos, 2000, pg 292). Yet there are those who support the concept of relative poverty, these supporters say that the definition must be applied to the standards within the society at a particular time, therefore depending on how affluent the society will depict whether somebody is above or below the poverty line. Also when looking at poverty, the definition cannot be determined on material value but other factors and experiences need to be taken into account, things such as poor education and unhealthy working conditions can be seen as aspects of multiple deprivation which leads to poverty.
Statistics by UNICEF in 2000 show that the UK has the highest rate of poverty in the EU and had the highest increase in the mid 1980's compared with other EU countries. According statistics by UNICEF the UK seems to have good standards in relation to its basic factors, compared with that of Mexico. Mexico is a developing country in the southern hemisphere, of its population 43.5 % of its population are under the age of 18, and compared with the UK's basic indicators it is nowhere near in comparison of the standard of living for its children. Many of its children migrate into the larger urban areas to gain employment with or without their families, this results in some children as young as 5 living on the streets. And according to its 1996 statistics, 3.5 million children aged 12 to 17 were part of the formal and informal labour force. Poverty in the developing countries such as Mexico poverty means not having shelter or food, these basic needs are different to that of somebody in the UK where poverty may mean to a child that they may not get to go on a school trip or have the correct school uniform. Although Mexico has seen a increase in its economy, many still live in social exclusion and approximately 24 million live in poverty. (http://www.unicef.org/infobycountry/mexico.html). UNICEF work hand in hand with the Mexican government in trying to promote a better standard of living for its children.
The government is to "to provide people with opportunities to take their families out of poverty and to improve the rewards for people taking lower-paid job" (Roberts, 2001, pg 55). This idea is about making people feel needed, so that they can get themselves out poverty and not to cause any set backs in children's developments, with an aim to break the cycle of deprivation. Although poverty is a problem that occurs throughout the world it is the way in which it defined depends on whether the problem is dealt with importance, because the developing world have the systems and the capital to treat it, it is less of a problem within the developed world, but this means that the gap between poverty in the third world is ever growing and those in the developed have the power to say how aid is spent and how they will tackle the problem for other countries but at a price. According to Bradshaw (2002) the outlook for poverty in the UK looks optimistic with the help of initiatives such as Surestart and Education Action Zones and the governments monitoring the future looks better for children in poverty. The assignment has looked at poverty and its definitions and how it can be defined it case of its geographical location, I have looked at poverty within the UK and Mexico, and the differences in the way that the problem is handled and depicted.
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