A Bangladeshi boy helps to raise a red flag at a demonstration. He is surrounded by the crowd at the protest, mostly women with headscarves. Credit: Rainbow Collective

Poverty is political

Poverty is political. It is the result of decisions made by those who hold power – governments and corporations – and a broken economic system which generates increasing wealth and power for elites at the expense of the majority of people on this earth.

We live in a world of colossal inequality, where vast wealth and resources are held by a tiny minority. Over half of the world’s population are forced to live in poverty, yet the richest 1% own almost half of all global wealth, and big business monopolises land and global resources.

Poverty erodes and undermines human rights. And the abuse of human rights pushes people into poverty. People in the Global South are disproportionately affected by injustice, inequality and human rights abuses. Austerity cuts and insecure work are pushing more and more working people in wealthier countries into poverty. The system is broken. 

The world is at a tipping point. The climate crisis is devastating the lives and livelihoods of people in the Global South, those least responsible for causing it. The global Covid-19 pandemic has pushed millions more into poverty. The need to act is increasingly urgent.

Poverty is political. The most effective way to end it is by taking collective action to challenge the structures of inequality and injustice. If we act together, a just, fair world is possible. 

Find out more about War on Want and our work.

Protesters holding placards saying 'No More Fashion Victims' outside the Gap clothing store in Exeter to highlight Gap’s refusal to sign the Saftey Accordthat would improve conditions for garment factory workers. Photo: (C) Clive_Chilvers

We campaign in the UK

We challenge human rights abusing corporations and governments, and hold those responsible for inequality and poverty to account. 


We expose and report on poverty and injustice

We expose and report on injustices and human rights violations.

Members of War on Want partner trade union FTZ&GSEU in Sri Lanka, protesting in defence of the right to strike, with fists raised and shouting chants.

We work with grassroots movements around the world

We work in partnership with grassroots social movements, trade unions and workers’ organisations in the Global South and across the world. We stand in solidarity with all people fighting for their rights.