The Urban Poverty Situation in Bangladesh

While much of the statistics and research of poverty in Bangladesh points to the problems of those in rural poverty, the urban situation is not much better. The percentage for urban poverty in the country is smaller than the rural areas and the total number of people is much smaller, numbering around 20 million. However, the urban poverty situation in the cities of Bangladesh is a real problem and the population of those living in slums continues to grow. Without the right infrastructure and improvements, the Bangladesh people will continue to see increased growth of urban poverty.

The main issue of urban poverty is the lack of available food. Because space is at a high premium in the cities, the formation of slum villages on the outskirts leaves little room for individuals or families to try and practice subsistence farming. Instead, they attempt to work for a nominal wage that often does not meet their food needs for a proper diet or basic survival. This slum living situation further worsens the health level of those living in Bangladesh cities, with a lower level of hygiene that allows disease and sickness to spread at rapid rates.

As a secondary problem, those that become sick because of living in slums and malnutrition are unable to receive quality healthcare. The type of healthcare that is available is low quality and is expensive when compared to the average wages. This creates a vicious circle of poverty in Bangladesh, with the impoverished people not being able to work because they are sick, which means that they cannot afford the foods that make up a proper diet. To their credit, the Bangladesh goverment has recognized the problem and is actively taking several steps to improve in all the areas where urban poverty plagues their cities and population.