Inequality in all its forms hinders progress.
In order to achieve SDG 10’s aim of reducing inequality, discrimination needs to be actively eliminated, ensuring that all people are being treated in a fair and equal manner. Specifically, the UN aim by 2030, “to empower and promote the social, economic and political inclusion of all, irrespective of age, sex, disability, race, ethnicity, origin, religion, economic status or other”*. Inequality is detrimental to social and economic development in both the short and long run, it shatters an individuals’ sense of hope as well as self-worth and reinforces the poverty cycle. This causes severe implications, crime rates soar, environmental protection degrades, and diseases can become more widespread.
Women and children experience inequality in a disproportionate manner to men, SDG 5 (Gender Equality) ties closely to SDG 10 in this regard. Each day women and children are dying from preventable diseases and childbirth due to their lack of proper access to healthcare. By 2030, the UN “progressively aim to achieve and sustain income growth of the bottom 40% of the population at a rate higher than the national wage”*. This can be achieved through governments designing fiscal, wage and social protection policies to stimulate and maintain wage growth.
How businesses can assist with SDG 10:
Reducing worldwide inequality will need radical change to occur. Businesses will need to go to greater lengths to ensure that in their own supply chains that people are being treated equally, are being paid a living wage and have access to the necessary facilities for living healthily and happily.
A solution to this may be for businesses to create their own exclusion policies. With the adoption of exclusion policies, businesses will be able to positively impact inequality and help reduce it ensure that all people irrespective of race, age, gender, religion, sexual orientation or other are able to realise their potential. The UN Global Compact’s 10 Principles can act as a helpful aid for creating exclusion policies. These 10 principles span across human rights, environmental, labour and anti-corruption***.