Poverty in the Czech Republic Compared to the European Union

Due to I am only Czech student in our course Poverty: Concepts and Challenges I would like to focus this blog post on level of poverty in the Czech Republic. In the second part I would like to compare results of research made in the Czech Republic with results of same research on level of poverty in the European Union. I will use the latest data from the Czech Statistical Office and data published on the European Commission website.

Research on poverty in the Czech Republic is made every year. Data I will show in this post are from the end of 2015. Data from 2016 will be published in the end of this month. Results of this yearly research show us percentage of people at risk of poverty due to insufficient income and at risk of social exclusion.

In 2015 there were 14% of total population in the Czech Republic at risk of poverty or social exclusion. If we divide society according to gender, women (15.6%) are more in danger of risk of poverty than men (12.3%). Children (18.5%) are more endangered than population in productive age or population older than 65 years (10.9%). Population in productive age can be divided according to their employment or unemployment. It is not surprise that 57% of unemployed people are at risk of poverty or social exclusion and “only” 6.3% of employed people are in the same situation. It is important to say that unemployment in the Czech Republic is constantly on very low level. In March 2017 it was slightly under the 5% of the Czech population. Important indicator of risk of poverty is household structure. Families with more children (15%) are more at risk of poverty that household without children (13%). But difference between households with children and without children is not so striking.

Let´s compare the Czech Republic with the whole European Union. The Czech Republic is on the long-term basis one of the countries with the lowest percentage of population under the level of poverty. There is 23.7% of total European Union population at risk of poverty or social exclusion. Percentages according to gender, age or employment are growing depending on percentage of total population at risk of poverty. 24.4% of women and 23% of men, 26.9% of children and 17.4% of people older than 65 years and 66.6% of unemployed and 12.5% of employed people are at risk of poverty.

In the course of approaching to conclusion I would like to briefly comment on material deprivation. There live close to 9% of population in severe material deprivation in the European Union. In 2015 it was 5.6% of population in the Czech Republic. Those people cannot afford to own washing machine, telephone, car or other things and cannot face unexpected expenses.

In this short article I tried to show the situation of poverty in the Czech Republic and compare it to the European Union. The Czech Republic has one of the lowest percentages of population under the level or at risk of poverty in the European Union as I mentioned and we can also see on the attached picture. It is positive these percentages in the Czech Republic are lower every year even though level of poverty is growing every year (means you need earn more to be over level of poverty). On the other hand we can´t say the European Union is not fighting against poverty. There exists the 2020 target which is being achieved by wide range of policies covered by The European Platform against Poverty and Social Exclusion.

Anna

Source of attached picture: http://ec.europa.eu/eurostat/news/themes-in-the-spotlight/poverty-day-2016

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