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1 in 5 Catalans live in poverty

On the International Day for the Eradication of Poverty, NGOs ask the Government to focus on policies that reduce social exclusion.

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18 October 2010 11:44 PM

by

ACN / Sarah Garrahan

Barcelona (ACN).- 19% of the population in Catalonia, or 1 in 5 Catalans, live in poverty. The immigrant population represents 25% of this. In the whole of Spain, 1 in 4 people, a total of 9 million, do not have the sufficient resources to live. In Europe, 17% of the population, some 90 million people, live in poverty. Around the world, 1,020 million people suffer from malnutrition. The Catalan Confederation of NGOs are profiting from the electoral climate to demand that the Government not cut corners on \u201Cmore responsible, social and solidarity\u201D policy-making. Actors Julio Manrique and Sílvia Bel stated this in a demonstration in Barcelona\u2019s Plaça de Sant Jaume, the centre of political power for Barcelona and Catalonia.


The demonstration, sponsored by the Catalan Confederation of NGOs, presented citizens with the opportunity to symbolically vote for 10 proposals intended to combat this social phenomenon. For the action, a large urn was placed in the middle of Plaça Sant Jaume. \u201CI am voting to eradicate poverty, because I think it is completely unfair that some people have many things and others are dying of famine\u2019, said Anna Vicente, one of the demonstration\u2019s participants. 

Francesc Mateu, president of the Catalan confederation of NGOs, told CNA that the means to stop poverty exist, but that \u201Cpolitical will is missing\u201D. He added that \u201Cover 1,200 people around the world live on less than 30 euros a day\u201D.

Actors Julio Manrique and Sílvia Bel read a manifesto by the NGOs demanding that political parties \u201Cpublicly commit to not cutting social expenses in Catalonia\u201D. They also called for an increase in Catalan international cooperation as the proposed budget for cooperation for the next legislature represents only 0.7%. On the other hand, many entities have denounced that the crisis is increasing poverty and that \u201Ca vulnerable population is growing all over the world\u201D. In the meantime, states have helped banks with 8.4 billion dollars, 70 times more than what goes to developing countries. And the banks still have not paid back 2.7 billion, money that would eradicate world poverty by 4 times. \u201CThose that did not provoke the crisis cannot pay for it\u201D, they said.

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  • The demonstration to fight poverty in Barcelona's Sant Jaume Square (by ACN)

  • The urn to vote on the 10 proposals to fight poverty (by ACN)

  • The demonstration to fight poverty in Barcelona's Sant Jaume Square (by ACN)
  • The urn to vote on the 10 proposals to fight poverty (by ACN)