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Understanding Poverty

If you want to learn more about poverty or help raise awareness and knowledge of the issue in your organisation the following information may provide a useful framework for you.


Understanding Poverty

Knowledge Required
Concepts Absolute poverty, relative poverty, material deprivation, persistent poverty, severe poverty
Measurement Income thresholds (Typical household income of different types of household living in poverty)
Causes Social, political, economic, individual behaviour
Population Numbers living in poverty; Composition of population experiencing poverty; Risk rate of living in poverty
Policy What are the key UK, Scottish, and local strategies for tackling poverty


Understanding How Poverty Is Experienced

Knowledge Required
Cost of living Cost of key essentials; proportion of income that is expended on essentials
Poverty Premiums Services that are more expensive to people living in poverty
Respect Understanding of the ways in which living in poverty can undermine the dignity and self-respect of those who experience it
Language Understanding of ways of describing poverty that are offensive to those who experience it
Barriers Knowledge and understanding of the barriers that make it more difficult for those who experience poverty to escape it


Understanding How the Wider Public Perceive Poverty

Knowledge Required
Knowledge Local public knowledge of the facts of poverty
Attitudes Local inclination toward people experiencing poverty
Media Image Dominant media presentation of poverty
Political Message Key party positions/messages toward poverty