Migrants, Women Left Behind In Human Development: UN

Migrants, women left behind in human development: UN
Impressive advances have been made in human development over the past 25 years on many fronts, but ethnic minorities, refugees, migrants and women are being left behind, a United Nations report said on Tuesday
. "People now live longer, more children are in school and more people have access to basic social services," said the report by the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), released in Stockholm.
"Yet human development has been uneven." Even though the global population increased by two billion from 1990 to 2015, the report found that more than one billion people escaped extreme poverty, 2.1 billion gained access to improved sanitation and more than 2.6 billion had access to an improved source of drinking water. But still, in 2016, one person in nine was hungry and one in three was malnourished. About 18,000 people die every day because of air pollution, and every minute an average of 24 people are displaced from their homes.
Among the groups where such basic deprivations were common were women and girls, ethnic minorities, indigenous peoples, people with disabilities and migrants. "Many migrants, especially the world's 65 million forcibly displaced people, face extreme conditions -- lacking jobs, income and access to health care and social services beyond emergency humanitarian assistance," the report found. "They often face harassment, animosity and violence in host countries.
" Striking a positive chord, the UNDP noted that gender equality and women's empowerment were now mainstream aspects of any development discourse. But women are still discriminated against in terms of both rights and opportunities. "Only 10 to 20 percent of landowners in developing countries are women," it said. Meanwhile, ethnic minorities often face discrimination and exclusion from education, employment and administrative and political positions, resulting in poverty and "higher vulnerability" to crime, including human trafficking.
Income inequality remains a problem as well. Just one percent of the global population holds 46 percent of the world's wealth, the report said. The UN programme recommended several measures to reach those being left behind. It said countries needed to pursue "inclusive growth" such as employment-led development strategies, frameworks to tackle informal work, and renewed focus on sectors where poor people live and work. Countries also need to improve opportunities for women, it said, adding that if all girls in developing countries completed secondary education, "the under-five mortality rate would be halved". They must also mobilise resources for human development and empower young people and see human development through a "lifecycle lens" that takes into account the different challenges people face during different phases of their lives.
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