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Poverty in the Philippines

Poverty in the Philippines is a major obstacle to the success of future generations of the Filipino. Because it poses such a significant threat to political stability, poverty in the Philippines is a very serious problem.

It is mainly a rural problem, and tends to worsen in the southern Philippine islands of Visayas and into Mindanao. Luzon and the northern islands have a considerable number of Filipino people living below the poverty line too. In fact, almost a third of all of the population of the Philippines lives below the poverty threshold. According to the most recent data collected by international sources concerning poverty in the Philippines, 44% of the population survives on less that $2 US per day!

Poverty is pronounced deprivation in wellbeing, and comprises many dimensions.

What is Poverty?

It includes low incomes and the inability to acquire the basic goods and services necessary for survival with dignity. Poverty also encompasses low levels of health and education, poor access to clean water and sanitation, inadequate physical security, lack of voice, and insufficient capacity and opportunity to better ones life. World Bank

Fundamentally, poverty is a denial of choices and opportunities, a violation of human dignity. It means lack of basic capacity to participate effectively in society. It means not having enough to feed and clothe a family, not having a school or clinic to go to, not having the land on which to grow ones food or a job to earn ones living, not having access to credit. It means insecurity, powerlessness and exclusion of individuals, households and communities. It means susceptibility to violence, and it often implies living in marginal or fragile environments, without access to clean water or sanitation. United Nations

Condition of Poverty

Definition Poverty

Reduction Goal

Absolute Poverty

Lack of resources to meet the physical needs for survival.

Meet basic needs.

Relative Poverty Lack of resources to achieve a standard of living that allows people to play roles, participate in relationships, and live a life that is deemed normative by the society to which they belong. Equity/parity with others.

Poverty as Dependence

Lack of critical mass of assets needed to meet ones needs on a sustainable basis. Self-sufficiency

Poverty as Exclusion Processes of deprivation and marginalization that isolate people from the social and economic activities of society. Inclusion

Poverty as Capabilities Deprivation Lack of resources, capabilities, choices, security and power necessary for the enjoyment of an adequate standard of living and other civil, economic, political and social rights. Human development

Types of Poverty Another way to understand poverty is to focus on transitional poverty versus chronic poverty. Transitional Poverty Relatively short term (less than 5 years) Specific events and circumstances Chronic Poverty Long Term (often more than 10 years) Multidimensional Intergenerational Poverty Multidimensional and cyclical

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Causes of Poverty
Individual Deficiencies - Poor are less well adapted to the demands of the society in which they live, dont work hard enough, make bad choices or are in some other ways deficient. Culture of Poverty - Marginalized within mainstream society, the poor develop a set of institutions, values, norms and behaviours which perpetuates rather than counters poverty. Situational Poverty - Poverty results from one or more events or circumstances that prevents the attainment of(middle class) economic or social goals e.g. divorce, job loss, death of a spouse, illness, lack of access to education, training or other important services like child care or transportation. Structural Poverty - Poverty is due to economic, political and social systems that provide unequal access to resources and opportunities.

Causes of Poverty in the Phil.


Low revenue collection is a result of an ineffective taxing system. Pork barrel is the output of a poor political system. Corruption is a fruit of greed. Poor investment climate is the consequence of inefficient regulatory, legal and political framework of doing business in the Philippines. Natural disasters are acts of God. For the consumption of those who dont believe God, these disasters are acts of natural randomness. Moreover, some of these disasters arise from the human destruction of our environment. Nevertheless, natural disasters are not the significant causes of poverty in the Philippines. War, terrorism and peace problems are the effect of misunderstanding. Unemployment is the fruit of poverty itself. It is also the effect of laziness and lack of resourcefulness. Poor health is another consequence of the lack of self-control, discipline and poverty itself. Abuse of our environment is another fruit of greed.

Poor quality education is another consequence of poverty itself. It is also the fruit of the lack of patience, resourcefulness and hard work. Low financial literacy rate is the consequence of the lack of government programs to enhance financial education in the Philippines. Lack of Filipino entrepreneurs is caused by the inability of the government to provide financial grants to small, new and aspiring entrepreneurs. This is also the result of the lack of patience and willingness of people to face business risks despite of the unlimited opportunities offered by entrepreneurship. Lack of government support for small entrepreneurs is just another result of poor national governance. Laziness and procrastination are results of the lack of value and interest. Dependence is the consequence of the absence of self-trust and confidence. Lack of self-control is the fruit of evil, or may I say the absence of love. Lack of love for God is caused by not knowing God.

Causes of poverty
- poverty in the Philippines caused by laziness

to work harder and more hours - poverty in the Philippines caused by lack of quality consciousness - poverty in the Philippines caused by abuse by rich ones - poverty in the Philippines caused by mismanagement of government due to lack of sincere interest for the benefit of ALL - poverty in the Philippines caused by social injustice created by mankind / industry / money world / investors / rich ones - poverty in the Philippines caused by accidents / disasters / war / political instability

Measuring Progress for Poverty Reduction Finally, there are a variety of ways to understand what constitutes substantial progress in the journey out of poverty. The following table captures the most common points of view:

Approach Poverty Line

What Constitutes Progress Moving above the poverty line Reducing depth of poverty Reducing inequalities in terms of

Wealth or Income Gaps wealth or income Pathways Out of Poverty journey

Achieving practical milestones on a Points near the end of the path Significant gains anywhere along

the path

Asset or Capacity Building Accumulating the assets or capacities required to meet needs on a sustainable basis: Economic/financial assets Broader set of assets (personal, human, social, physical)

Among Southeast Asian countries, poverty incidence is most extreme in the Philippines where some 15.3 million Filipinos (half of the poor population) wake up every morning without food on the table. These people are called subsistence individuals or whose income cannot provide for basic food requirements. The National Wages and Productivity Commission (NWPC) pegged the minimum income that a family of six must earn annually at P191,874 in order to live decently in Metro Manila.

Family Income includes primary income and receipts from other sources received by all family members during the calendar year, as participants in any economic activity or as recipients of transfers, pensions, grants, etc. (2000 FIES, NSO) Primary income includes: Salaries and wages from employment Commissions, tips, bonuses, family and clothing allowance, transportation and representation allowance and honoraria Other forms of compensation and net receipts derived from the operation of family-operated enterprises/activities and the practice of a profession or trade

Income from other sources includes: Imputed rental values of owner-occupied dwelling units Interests Rentals including landowners share of agricultural products Pensions Support and the value of food and non-food items received as gifts by the family (as well as the imputed value of services rendered free of charge to the family). Receipts from family sustenance activities, which are not considered as family operated enterprise.

Poverty Gap (PG) is the total income shortfall (expressed in proportion to the poverty line) of families with income below the poverty threshold, divided by the total number of families (1997 Philippine Poverty Statistics, NSCB). Note: Thedifferencebetweentheincomegapandthepovertygapisthe useofnumberofpoorfamiliesasdenominatorfortheincome gap.Forthepovertygap,thetotalnumberoffamiliesisused. Boththeincomegapandthepovertygaparemeasuresofthe depthofpoverty. Severity of Poverty (SP) is the total of the squared income shortfall (expressed in proportion to the poverty line) of families with income below the poverty threshold, divided by the total number of families. It is a poverty measure which is sensitive to the income distribution among the poor the worse this distribution is, the more severe poverty is.

EFFECTS OF POVERTY
1. HEALTH One third of deaths - some 18 million people a year or 50,000 per day are due to poverty-related causes: in total 270 million people, most of them women and children, have died as a result of poverty since 1990. Those living in poverty suffer disproportionately from hunger or even starvation and disease. Those living in poverty suffer lower life expectancy. According to the World Health Organization, hunger and malnutrition are the single gravest threats to the world's public health and malnutrition is by far the biggest contributor to child mortality, present in half of all cases. Every year nearly 11 million children living in poverty die before their fifth birthday. 1.02 billion people go to bed hungry every night.[41] Poverty increases the risk of homelessness. There are over 100 million street children worldwide. Increased risk of drug abuse may also be associated with poverty. According to the Global Hunger Index, South Asia has the highest child malnutrition rate of world's regions. Nearly half of all Indian children are undernourished,one of the highest rates in the world and nearly double the rate of Sub-Saharan Africa.

2. Education Research has found that there is a high risk of educational underachievement for children who are from low-income housing circumstances. This often is a process that begins in primary school for some less fortunate children. Some unable to complete their high school education. There are indeed many explanations for why students tend to drop out of school. For children with low resources, the risk factors are similar to excuses such as juvenile delinquency rates, higher levels of teenage pregnancy, and the economic dependency upon their low income parent or parents. Families and society who submit low levels of investment in the education and development of less fortunate children end up with less favorable results for the children who see a life of parental employment reduction and low wages. Poverty often drastically affects childrens success in school. Therefore, it is safe to state that children who live at or below the poverty level will have far less success educationally than children who live above the poverty line. Poor children have a great deal less healthcare and this ultimately results in many absences from the academic year.

3.Violence Areas strongly affected by poverty tend to be more violent. In one survey, 67% of children from disadvantaged inner cities said they had witnessed a serious assault, and 33% reported witnessing a homicide. 51% of fifth graders from New Orleans (median income for a household: $27,133) have been found to be victims of violence, compared to 32% in Washington, DC (mean income for a household: $40,127).

Eliminating Poverty Poverty is eliminated by: generating more employment; raising the level of minimum education; making the social elite aware of the possibility of removing it; presenting the government concrete programmes of prosperity; drawing upon the resources of every social institution like Chamber of Commerce, university, research institutions, government, voluntary organisation, U.N., U.N. agencies, press, etc. educating the public opinion that poverty is not inevitable. acceptingtheprinciplethattheworldcancompel anationtoeradicatepoverty.(MSS)