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poverty in italy caritas report 6 million people who they are



In Italy, nearly 2 million families live in absolute poverty. This means 5.5 million citizens, of which 9.4% are Italians. This is confirmed by the 21st Caritas report on poverty and social exclusion, entitled “The weak link”.

As we know, Caritas is an organization of the CEI, the Italian Episcopal Conference. Its report was made public on October 17, the International Day for the Eradication of Poverty. From the figures in the Report, it appears that “absolute poverty in 2021 confirms its historic peaks reached in 2020, the year of the start of the Covid pandemic”. “Families in a situation of absolute poverty amount to 1,960,000, or 5,571,000 people (9.4% of the resident population). The incidence is confirmed as higher in the South (10% against 9.4% in 2020). While it drops significantly in the North, especially in the North West (6.7% against 7.9%)”.

Photo Ansa / Riccardo Antimiani

The text of the report examines official poverty statistics and data from Caritas sources, drawn from nearly 2,800 listening centers across Italy. “With reference to age – we read – poverty levels continue to be inversely proportional to age. The percentage of absolute poor is 14.2% among minors. There are almost 1.4 million poor children and young people. But absolute poverty also stands at “11.4% among young people between 18 and 34; 11.1% for the class between 35 and 64 years old and 5.3% for those over 65 years old. »

Families in poverty

Between 2020 and 2021, the incidence of poverty has increased more than the national average for families of at least 4 people. But also, specifies the text, “for families with a reference person aged 35 to 55, children aged 4 to 6, families of foreigners and those with at least one earned income”. Poverty, on the other hand, has increased less than the national average “for small families, with elderly people, made up only of Italians”.

Temperature check during the 2021 Christmas lunch for the poor and homeless, organized by the Community of Sant’Egidio in the Church of Santa Maria in Trastevere in Rome. Photo Ansa / Riccardo Antimiani

The CEI: “More income from citizenship”

“The anti-poverty measure existing in our country, the citizenship income, has so far been received by 4.7 million people,” continues the Italian Caritas report. However, the RdC “affects a little less than half of the absolute poor (44%). It should therefore be ensured that all those who find themselves in the worst conditions are reached, starting with the absolute poor. Alongside the economic component of aid, adequate social inclusion processes must be guaranteed. »

Zuppi and the theme of poverty

“One thing that struck me – underlined the President of the CEI, the Cardinal of Bologna, Matteo Zuppi – is the problem of the citizenship income which reaches a little less than half of the absolute poor. There is therefore an adjustment to be made, but keeping this commitment which must be so important at a time when poverty will be even harder, even heavier. And this risks generating even more poverty in these bands where survival fluctuates, which must also have the possibility of leaving this zone of relegation”.

The Abele group sashes three symbolic statues in the city center for Poverty Day. Turin October 17, 2022. Photo Ansa / Tino Romano

High energy prices

“Nearly 6 million people live in absolute poverty,” Cardinal Zuppi reiterated, referring to data from the XXI Caritas report. “It’s a worrying relationship that should help us choose and consciously live through difficult weeks and months. Suffering cannot wait and must not wait. Looking to the future requires a good understanding of the present.” The President of the IEC spoke of poverty also in relation to the energy crisis. “The energy crisis and rising costs will accentuate the cases of extreme poverty – he said – that is why we must be even more firm in finding a solution”.

Pope Francis: “Work and dignity”

To “fight against poverty”, it is necessary to “create jobs”, it is rather the declaration of Pope Francis who met a group of Spanish entrepreneurs. The Pontiff aims “for an economy that reconciles members of the different stages of production, without despising each other, without creating greater injustices or experiencing cold indifference”. It is work that gives people “dignity”. “There is a remedy to combat the evil of misery: work and love for the poor”.

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