Day for the Eradication of Poverty

Oct 17, 2019

Today marks the International Day for the Eradication of Poverty, which is one of my key priorities for the Seventy-Fourth Session of the General Assembly.

Poverty is not just a lack of access to food, shelter, healthcare, and sanitation. Poverty is a persistent feeling of distress and hopelessness, declining self-esteem, social exclusion, and exclusion from decision-making structures, and unequal access to justice.

We have the means to eradicate poverty; it is simply a matter of getting the policies right.

We must address the underlying causes of poverty within and across countries. Notably: corruption; conflict; cross-border crime; extreme climate changes; and a shortfall in financing for development.

Through Agenda 2030 for Sustainable Development, the world agreed to eradicate poverty;

We have made some progress in lifting people out of poverty: today there are fewer people living in slums; and more people than ever before, have access to electricity.

However, 10% of our population lives in extreme poverty.

This year, the International Day focuses on Acting Together to Empower Children, their Families and Communities to End Poverty.

Poverty disproportionately affects children. One out of five children in the world today lives in poverty. 

I believe that education is the great equalizer and has the potential to chart a course out of poverty for children. Equal access to quality education equips children to participate fully in society and to navigate a rapidly developing world.

If economic growth is to be sustainable, it must be inclusive. Investing in women’s empowerment is a direct investment into the development of societies.

Deepening inequalities are detrimental to economic growth and social cohesion.

We have, through Agenda 2030 for Sustainable Development, agreed on the ambitious Goal of eradicating poverty. We will soon enter into the Decade of Implementation. My role is to mobilize stronger commitment to action to lift people out of poverty.

We must mobilise resources to raise the $2.6 trillion required to reduce inequalities to promote conflict prevention and sustain peace

I am confident that by striving together, we will succeed in delivering for all.

We should get on with this critically important task.

I thank you.