UN / HUMAN RIGHTS POVERTY

21-Oct-2020 00:02:09
UN Special Rapporteur on extreme poverty and human rights Olivier De Schutter said the world’s economic recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic must combat poverty and reduce inequality and not “worsen or aggravate our ecological footprint." UNIFEED
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STORY: UN / HUMAN RIGHTS POVERTY
TRT: 2:09
SOURCE: UNIFEED
RESTRICTIONS: NONE
LANGUAGE: ENGLISH / NATS

DATELINE: 21 OCTOBER 2020, NEW YORK CITY
SHOTLIST
FILE - NEW YORK CITY

1. Wide shot, UN headquarters exterior

21 OCTOBER 2020, NEW YORK CITY

2. SOUNDBITE (English) Olivier De Schutter, United Nations Special Rapporteur on extreme poverty and human rights:
"Recent assessments is that at least 150 million more people shall be driven into destitution as a result of the crisis, and perhaps as many as 176 million more people shall fall under the international poverty line which is set at a ridiculously low level of 1.90 USD per day per person. On the other hand, we have an ecological crisis that the COVID-19 pandemic has not magically made disappear and that we also have to take into account in shaping the recovery from the economic crisis. So, we need to combat poverty. We need to reduce inequalities. And we need at the same time to remain within [inaudible] boundaries and not to worsen or aggravate our ecological footprint."

FILE - NEW YORK CITY

3. Wide shot, UN headquarters exterior

21 OCTOBER 2020, NEW YORK CITY

4. SOUNDBITE (English) Olivier De Schutter, United Nations Special Rapporteur on extreme poverty and human rights:
"The second recommendation is to identify in different areas, particularly energy, mobility, food, and housing, the measures that can have a triple impact or that can provide us with a triple dividend, the triple return. First, in so far as such measures can reduce the ecological impact - reduce particularly greenhouse gas emissions, secondly measures that can create employment particularly for people with low levels of qualifications, thirdly, measures that can ensure that good and services that are essential to lead a decent life are affordable for low income families."

FILE - NEW YORK CITY

5. Wide shot, UN headquarters exterior

21 OCTOBER 2020, NEW YORK CITY

6. SOUNDBITE (English) Olivier De Schutter, United Nations Special Rapporteur on extreme poverty and human rights:
"I believe it is a very important moment which we are facing because the choices we make today shall be decisive for the next 10-15 years to come given the 12 trillion dollars that have been injected by governments in the economy in order to speed-up the economic recovery."

FILE - NEW YORK CITY

7. Wide shot, UN headquarters exterior
STORYLINE
UN Special Rapporteur on extreme poverty and human rights Olivier De Schutter said the world’s economic recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic must combat poverty and reduce inequality and not “worsen or aggravate our ecological footprint."

At virtual press conference today (21 Oct), De Schutter said recent assessments show that “at least 150 million more people shall be driven into destitution as a result of the crisis, and perhaps as many as 176 million more people shall fall under the international poverty line which is set at a ridiculously low level of 1.90 USD per day per person.” He added, “On the other hand, we have an ecological crisis that the COVID-19 pandemic has not magically made disappear and that we also have to take into account in shaping the recovery from the economic crisis.”

De Schutter was discussing his report to the UN General Assembly which focused on the type of economic recovery the world should try to achieve. He said the report makes three main recommendations. First, he said while it is important to protect workers from the impacts of ecological transformation, more must be done to reduce the tension between this and worsening humanity’s ecological footprint. He said providing workers with new skills was no sufficient, adding that more must be done to achieve a green and just recovery.

The Special Rapporteur said, "The second recommendation is to identify in different areas, particularly energy, mobility, food, and housing, the measures that can have a triple impact or that can provide us with a triple dividend, the triple return. First, in so far as such measures can reduce the ecological impact - reduce particularly greenhouse gas emissions, secondly measures that can create employment particularly for people with low levels of qualifications, thirdly, measures that can ensure that good and services that are essential to lead a decent life are affordable for low income families."

De Schutter gave the example of improving insulation in old buildings. He said this would create employment, reduce energy use, and decrease energy bills for families.

The Third recommendation is to ensure that the economic recovery is financed in equitable manner. De Schutter said many social protection measures instituted during the pandemic were paid for by poor themselves in form of taxes. He emphasized the need to finance the economic recovery in ways that will reduce inequalities by adopting progressive taxation schemes and taxing corporations, while not allowing them to abuse the tax avoidance mechanisms that they have been using in the past.
The Special Rapporteur said, "I believe it is a very important moment which we are facing because the choices we make today shall be decisive for the next 10-15 years to come given the 12 trillion dollars that have been injected by governments in the economy in order to speed-up the economic recovery."

Special Rapporteurs are part of the Special Procedures of the UN Human Rights Council and work on a voluntary basis. They are not UN staff and do not receive a salary for their work. They are independent from any government or organization and serve in their individual capacity.
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