Goal 10: Reduce inequality within and among countries

The international community has made significant strides towards lifting people out of poverty. The most vulnerable nations – the least developed countries, the landlocked developing countries and the small island developing states – continue to make inroads into poverty reduction. However, inequality still persists and large disparities remain in access to health and education services and other assets. Additionally, while income inequality between countries may have been reduced, inequality within countries has risen. There is growing consensus that economic growth is not sufficient to reduce poverty if it is not inclusive and if it does not involve the three dimensions of sustainable development – economic, social and environmental. To reduce inequality, policies should be universal in principle paying attention to the needs of disadvantaged and marginalized populations.

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Reduce inequality within and among countries ":

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  • On average—and taking into account population size—income inequality increased by 11 per cent in developing countries between 1990 and 2010
  • A significant majority of households in developing countries—more than 75 per cent of the population—are living today in societies where income is more unequally distributed than it was in the 1990s
  • Evidence shows that, beyond a certain threshold, inequality harms growth and poverty reduction, the quality of relations in the public and political spheres and individuals’ sense of fulfilment and self-worth
  • There is nothing inevitable about growing income inequality; several countries have managed to contain or reduce income inequality while achieving strong growth performance
  • Income inequality cannot be effectively tackled unless the underlying inequality of opportunities is addressed
  • In a global survey conducted by UN Development Programme, policy makers from around the world acknowledged that inequality in their countries is generally high and potentially a threat to long-term social and economic development
  • Evidence from developing countries shows that children in the poorest 20 per cent of the populations are still up to three times more likely to die before their fifth birthday than children in the richest quintiles
  • Social protection has been significantly extended globally, yet persons with disabilities are up to five times more likely than average to incur catastrophic health expenditures
  • Despite overall declines in maternal mortality in the majority of developing countries, women in rural areas are still up to three times more likely to die while giving birth than women living in urban centres
  • Does everyone at your place of work have access to healthcare? Find out what your rights are to work. Fight against inequality.
  • Raise your voice against any type of discrimination. Everyone is equal regardless of their gender, race, sexual orientation, social background and physical abilities.
  • Run a voting registration campaign. One of the issues contributing to rising inequalities is caused by the lack of representation of minorities and underprivileged groups in government. You can run a voting registration education in these groups to raise their engagement and representation in institutions of power.
  • Visit local shelters, orphanages or minority community centers and organize a conversation space to discuss the importance of these rights or volunteer there regularly.
  • Support migrants and refugees in your communities. Volunteer in a local refugee camp. Gather or donate the appliances, food, clothes needed.
  • Favor companies that are inclusive. Check the lists of the companies that are inclusive for different minorities through employment there or their products.
  • Stay informed. Follow your local news and stay in touch with the Global Goals online or on social media at @TheGlobalGoals.

It is important that we all take a small step to make sure that we meet the Global Goals. Use these 10 targets to create action for partnerships for the goals.

Reduce Income Inequalities

By 2030, progressively achieve and sustain income growth of the bottom 40 per cent of the population at a rate higher than the national average.

Promote Universal Social, Economic and Political Inclusion

By 2030, empower and promote the social, economic and political inclusion of all, irrespective of age, sex, disability, race, ethnicity, origin, religion or economic or other status.

Ensure Equal Opportunities and End Discrimination

Ensure equal opportunity and reduce inequalities of outcome, including by eliminating discriminatory laws, policies and practices and promoting appropriate legislation, policies and action in this regard.

Adopt Fiscal and Social Policies that Promotes Equality

Adopt policies, especially fiscal, wage and social protection policies, and progressively achieve greater equality.

Improve Regulation of Global Financial Markets and Institutions

Improve the regulation and monitoring of global financial markets and institutions and strengthen the implementation of such regulations.

Ensure Representation for Developing Countries in Financial Institutions

Ensure enhanced representation and voice for developing countries in decision-making in global international economic and financial institutions in order to deliver more effective, credible, accountable and legitimate institutions.

Responsible and Well-Managed Migration Policies

Facilitate orderly, safe, regular and responsible migration and mobility of people, including through the implementation of planned and well-managed migration policies.

Special and Differential Treatment for Developing Countries

Implement the principle of special and differential treatment for developing countries, in particular least developed countries, in accordance with World Trade Organization agreements.

Encourage Development Assistance and Investment in Least Developed Countries

Encourage official development assistance and financial flows, including foreign direct investment, to States where the need is greatest, in particular least developed countries, African countries, small island developing States and landlocked developing countries, in accordance with their national plans and programmes.

Reduce Transaction Costs for Migrant Remittances

By 2030, reduce to less than 3 per cent the transaction costs of migrant remittances and eliminate remittance corridors with costs higher than 5 per cent.

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