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Eradication of poverty remains unfinished business of 20th century: Modi

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New Delhi: Addressing the 70th anniversary meeting of United Nations Economic and Social Council (UNECOSOC) by video link, Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Friday said the eradication of poverty remains the greatest unfinished business of the 20th century and the most important unfulfilled objective of the United Nations.

Modi said the work of UNECOSOC – particularly the manner in which it advances the improvement in the human condition and ensures a life of dignity for all – is central to the overall agenda of the United Nations.

“But has the UNECOSOC managed to fulfil the expectations of our founders? While we have seen remarkable progress over these 70 years, eradication of poverty remains the greatest unfinished business of the 20th century. It is also the most important unfulfilled objective of the United Nations,” Modi said.

The prime minister said the 70th anniversary of UNECOSOC should be used to rejuvenate the council, to make it more action oriented, policy relevant and more responsive to the needs and aspirations of our people.

“In doing so, the guiding philosophy of the UNECOSOC must always be the welfare of the poorest of the poor, or ‘antyodaya’ in Indian thought,” the prime minister said.

The special meeting to mark the 70th anniversary of the council was held in New York.

Modi said UNECOSOC was a key pillar of the United Nations structure. “Its creation as a distinct part of the United Nations is a testimony to the centrality of development in the vision of the founders of the UN,” Modi said.

“To achieve a peaceful and prosperous world, we need to put in place, first and foremost, conditions for rapid socio-economic development; improvement in the human condition, and an end to hunger and deprivation,” he added.

Recalling India’s contribution to the creation of UNECOSOC, Modi said an eminent citizen of India, Arcot Ramaswamy Mudaliar, was a key architect of UNECOSOC and served as its first president at the inaugural session in 1946.

The prime minister said the 70th anniversary of the UNECOSOC could not have come at a more appropriate moment.

“The international community has just given to itself a new comprehensive vision of development. The ‘2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development’ presents a valuable opportunity for the UN system to rethink its role and purpose and make itself more effective.

It is now the responsibility of UNECOSOC to rise up to this challenge and contribute to making this agenda a success,” he said.

Modi said the developing world not only have to end poverty, it has to do so in a manner that is friendly to the planet and environment.

He said the developed countries face responsibilities to rapidly move their economies onto a sustainable path, follow sustainable lifestyles and assist developing countries with finance and technologies.

Modi said technology presents solutions that were unthinkable earlier and the challenge was to channelize the available resources and use technology to tackle the most urgent problems facing people.

“So long as there is poverty in the world, so long as our people, no matter in which country, remain deprived of basic human amenities, freedoms, rights and opportunities, the work of the UNECOSOC will not be complete,” he said. (IANS)(Photo: www.sankarshanthakur.com)

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Higher Poverty Associated with Increased Youth Suicide Risk: Researchers

Further, areas of concentrated poverty may lack infrastructure such as quality schools, sustainable jobs, health care facilities, and mental health resources supporting good health for adults and children, they added

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Suicide
When it comes to identify who is more at suicide risk, scientists have found that physical illness and injury raises the risk of Suicide in men but not women, along with a plethora of other insights into the complex factors that may increase a person's risk of suicide. Pixabay

Researchers have revealed that adolescents living in poverty may be at greater risk of suicide, particularly by firearms.

According to the study, suicide in children under age 20 has been increasing in the US, with rates almost doubling over the last decade. Between 2007 to 2016, nearly 21,000 children ages 5-19 years old died by suicide,

The findings, published in the journal JAMA Pediatrics, show a link between poverty and suicide in children and teens.

“The results were consistent in a step-wise fashion, as poverty increased, so did the rate of suicide,” said study researchers Lois Lee, from Boston Children’s Hospital in the US.

For the results, the researchers grouped the number of suicides into five levels of poverty at the county level ranging from a low of 0-4.9 per cent to greater than 20 per cent.

They learned that the rate of suicides in children and adolescents is 37 per cent higher in counties with the highest levels of poverty – where more than 20 per cent of the population in the county lives below the federal poverty level – compared with suicide rates in the lowest levels of poverty.

In this study, researchers collected information from the US Centres for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) Compressed Mortality File, which includes data on all US deaths, including cause of death.

Suicide
The Suicide rate in cities in 2016 was 13 per cent as compared to the all-India suicide rate of 10.3 per cent. Pixabay

After searching for deaths by suicide, method of suicide, and county where the suicide occurred from 2007-2016, they paired that data with county-level poverty rates from US Census data and poverty estimates from the US Census Bureau Small Area Income and Poverty Estimates (SAIPE) Programme.

The findings from this study are similar to research from the CDC that found increases in suicide in youth and young adults ages 10-24 between 2000-2017.

The research also revealed an increased suicide rate from firearms in the more impoverished counties compared to the least.

According to the study, the researchers have seen a rise in the number of children and teens with mental health issues, including suicide attempts or thoughts of suicide, seeking care in the emergency department (ED).

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The study authors reported that children living in poverty are likely to be exposed to more family turmoil, violence, social isolation, and lack of positive peer-to-peer relationships and may be more likely to have emotional difficulties like depression and anxiety.

Further, areas of concentrated poverty may lack infrastructure such as quality schools, sustainable jobs, health care facilities, and mental health resources supporting good health for adults and children, they added. (IANS)