The UN Special Rapporteur on extreme poverty and human rights has just concluded his country visit to the UK (from the 6th to the 16th of November). The official visit focused on the interlinkages between poverty and the realization of human rights in the UK. RESURJ submitted to the special rapporteur's call for written submissions from civil society on the impacts of austerity on poverty. RESURJ's submission focused on inequalities, austerity, and economic justice in the UK and outlined the ways in which austerity has impacted women, in particular, marginalized women and sexual and reproductive health and rights.
RESURJ's submission also highlighted the ways in which austerity has and will impact the implementation of the sustainable development goals domestically in the UK and the various ways in which welfare changes, cuts to disability benefits, to sexual and reproductive health services, universal credit, precarious employment and social housing cuts has disproportionately affected women, families, migrants, and people with disabilities.
We welcome the Special Rapporteur's report and highlighting of the fact that women are particularly and disproportionately affected by extreme poverty, including through reductions in social care services, universal credit and the ways in which people with disabilities, young people, children, asylum seekers and migrants have been disproportionately affected by austerity measures. We agree with the Special Rapporteur's conclusion and underscoring of the fact that poverty is a political choice. The fiscal measure of austerity is a choice that impacts the most marginalized and benefits 'the wealthy few'.
You can read and download RESURJ's full submission below.