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2010 – European Year of Poverty

Did you know that 2010 is European Year of Poverty?  The EU commission group established to run this campaign tells us that “The European Union is one of the richest areas in the world, but still 17% of EU citizens have such limited resources that they cannot afford the basics.”

This is interesting because it is EU policies that have played a significant part in creating their state of poverty. So what is going to be done about it?

 The web site explains that “There is no miracle solution to put an end to poverty and social exclusion. However, one thing is sure: we cannot win the fight without you. The time is ripe to renew our commitment to solidarity, social justice and greater inclusion. The time is ripe for the 2010 European Year against Poverty and Social Exclusion”. The campaign’s programme will

  • Encourage involvement and political commitment from each and every segment of society to participate in the fight against poverty and social exclusion, from the European to the local level, whether public or private;
  • Inspire each and every European citizen to participate in the fight against poverty and social exclusion;
  • Give voice to the concerns and needs of people experiencing poverty and social exclusion;
  • Engage with civil society and non-governmental organisations that fight poverty and social exclusion;
  • Help deconstruct stereotypes and stigmas attached to poverty and social exclusion;
  • Promote a society that sustains and develops quality of life, social well-being and equal opportunities for all;
  • Boost solidarity between generations and ensure sustainable development

In other words it will be busy doing lots of things of little consequence whilst doing nothing to promote the economic measures that would really make a difference. Should one laugh or weep?