Voters demand more action on world poverty

 A YouGov poll published today shows that 70 percent of people eligible to vote - equivalent to 30 million people - have taken action on global poverty since the last election in 2001. However, the British public overwhelming believes political parties must do more to end extreme poverty. The poll was commissioned by members of MAKEPOVERTYHISTORY to coincide with World Poverty Day on Sunday 24 April. All the UK's main political parties say they will use the day to campaign on their plans for tackling poverty in the developing world. The poll reveals that 78 percent of people want to see the main political parties do more on fighting global poverty. 82 percent believe that politicians need to respond as urgently to the number of children dying every day in Africa as they did to the Asia Tsunami. Two-thirds think fighting poverty would do more to make the world safe than fighting wars. MAKEPOVERTYHISTORY is urging for action on trade justice, dropping the debt, and more and better aid at the 2005 G8 Summit, hosted by the British government in Gleneagles this summer. MAKEPOVERTYHISTORY spokesperson Alison Fenney said: "Every single day, 30,000 children are dying as a result of extreme poverty. This poll tells us that the public are taking action on global poverty. Their campaigning work over the last five years has made global poverty an election issue. They want to see the next government do more on tackling the issues of trade, debt, and aid. On World Poverty Day, political parties must respond on what they are going to do to meet these demands." On trade, 88 percent of those polled believe international trade rules should be rewritten to help people in poor countries to work their way out of poverty. On debt, 75 percent of people polled agreed that rich donors should cancel the unpayable debts of the poorest countries. On aid, 50 percent of people polled wanted the UK to meet its commitment to giving 0.7 percent of national income in development aid by 2010 or earlier. Currently Labour and the Conservatives have plans only to meet the target by 2013, while the Liberal Democrats have set 2011 as their target. And almost one in four want the UK to reach the figure by the end of next year.

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