What Are Some of the Effects of Poverty on Societies?

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Some of the effects of poverty on societies include high infant and child mortality rates, illiteracy, malnutrition, homelessness and susceptibility to violence. According to the World Bank, 100 million people were at risk from increased poverty in 2008. Global poverty is often measured by the data collected on life expectancy and child mortality.

There can be varying definitions for poverty depending on the views of the individual or organization and the context in which the term is being used. According to the United Nations, the criteria for poverty include the lack of opportunities and available choices, powerlessness, an inability to effectively participate in society and a violation of human dignity. The World Bank views poverty as deprivation in well-being and the inability to obtain the services and goods that are required to survive with dignity.