The world today faces a myriad of challenges. Key among those challenges touch on economic and social issues. The fact that economic and social issues touch directly on the lives of everyone in the world has led to numerous effort to promote and improve solutions to the challenges. Despite many other economic and social issues, there are those that have taken center stage in the global arena. Among them are minimum wages which are now considered part of the human rights to avert exploitation? Another key issue touches on gun control. Although some countries have relaxed laws on gun ownership, it has become a challenge for the government to ensure its appropriate use, a fact that has raised concerns to control the purchase and use of guns. Similarly, the world is now grappling with challenges to do with abortion and Planned Parenthood. The issues dig deeper on individual rights and the economic conditions forcing many organize their family set up in a way never considered before. Below we explore those three socio-economic issues on a global scale, to gather more information about them.
The issue of minimum wages deals with economic issues almost in each country, and collectively have an impact on the global issues. As a result, this issue has been discussed by top global institutions and more specifically the United Nations. During its inception in 1945, UN members state agreed to work together to promote and improve the economic and social advancement of all people around the globe. Several since that pledge, a lot has been achieved especially on the issue of minimum wages. Minimum wages determines directly the standard of living as well as the purchasing power of people in underdeveloped regions. As such, fixing minimum wages and preventing gullible employees from exploiting them has been one of the top global challenges.
The United Nations was among the first institutions to enact guiding principles as well asking their members states to ratify and adopt them adhering to minimum wages. This culminated the founding of International Labor Organization (ILO). The organization has since then enacted several conventions regarding the same issue. Among the convention is the Labor Clauses of 1947 concerning labor clauses in public contracts. The Protection of Wages Convention, 1949, minimum wage fixing convention, 1970, Protection of Workers Claims Convention, 1992 among many other conventions. The sole purpose for this is to ensure workers are fairly remunerated under favorable working conditions.
Several UN member states have on their own enacted their principles and laws to fix minimum wages in their respective jurisdictions. The United States and other developed countries like the UK, Germany, France, Spain, and others have been in the forefront fixing minimum wages and enacting strict rules to ensure employers do not violate the requirement. In the US, the federal minimum wage stands at $7.25 per hour. However, this has not stopped other states from enacting their minimum wages. For example, the state of Washington enacted a law raising her minimum wages from initially nine dollars to fifteen dollars to be implemented in phases till 2018. Many other states across the US have similarly enacted laws raising minimum wages significantly higher above the federal minimum wages. To ensure employers do not exploit clauses in federal laws to escape increasing their workers’ wages to a required minimum in their respective areas, federal laws maintains that employers should always pay whichever is higher between the existing minimum wages.
A similar trend has been observed in Europe and other developed countries. All countries in Europe have minimum wages set by law and strictly ensure implementation by employers. The minimum wage in EU region averages $5.26. On the contrary, Asians and African countries, often due to pressure and need to ratify international conventions on labor and minimum wage laws, have done so but faced stiff challenges in ensuring its implementation. Many countries across the two continents, despite having the laws in place, do not act to ensure employers follow the laws. This general impact of this laxity is exploitation and violation of human rights working in those countries.
The issue of gun controls has dominated our screens for several years now. Although there have been issues with guns before, the stories have dominated the recent years most. The US Constitution’s Second Amendment gives civilians rights to bear arms. Due to this right, it is estimated that 30-35% of all guns world over are owned by Americans. The existence of legislation from state to state dictating on who can own and how they can be carried and stored has not curbed widespread repercussions of gun ownership. In the last five years alone, more than ten mass shootings have taken place in different parts of US. This mass shooting, in turn, has led to several questions being raised about guns and more specifically on how they can be controlled.
The issue of misuse of firearms has raised concerns resulting in some calling for tighter gun control laws, whereas others, who feel they have been responsible rejecting the idea of gun control. Proponents of gun control argue that statistics do not indicate a cause-and-effect relationship and that the rates of gun homicide and other gun crimes have dropped in the last two decades or so. The issue continues to generate heated debates within American public and in some of her law establishing authorities. At the height of mass shooting, and in reply to a public angered by the executive’s failure to act on guns, President Obama issued a package of executive orders designed to decrease gun violence. Among the orders issued included a requirement for all gun dealers to obtain federal licenses and in turn conduct background check for prospective buyers.
In other countries, gun laws are tighter compared to the US. For example in Canada and Australia, inspired by past incidences of gun misuse enacted laws making it compulsory that a thought background check must be conducted on all prospective buyers. They also prohibited public ownership of some guns like automatic rifles. In Israel, laws are even stricter. Although all Israeli join the military on adulthood where they receive training on weapons after they are done from the military college they are supposed to adhere strictly to civilian gun laws. Their strict culture and discipline make Israel among the country with least gun homicide cases. It also bans ownership of certain assault guns.
The UK tightened their gun laws after a widespread public outcry precipitated by extraordinary acts of gun violence. They subsequently enacted numerous gun laws that made it tough or civilians to own guns. In other parts of Europe, the story has remained almost the same. Norway was forced to review its gun laws after a civilian attacked a public gathering killing dozens in July 2011. In general, Europe has had a history of gun violence has tight gun laws compared to the US.
Since the rise of women movements after Second World War, the issue of abortion has been one of the most discussed from pro-women rights groups. Abortion and Parenthood touch on women directly, and that is why they have been more concerned than anyone else. Planned Parenthood has also been an issue of central discussion in overpopulated countries.
Abortion, being a central issue in women’s rights has gained massive support across many countries in the world. Many states across the US now consider it as part of a woman right in which she can decide on her own what to do. In the US gives women the right to privacy that includes the right to determine whether or not to bear a child. The general US public has shown a lot of support to abortion and holds that it should include the right to conduct it safely under the care of health professionals. An issue that continues to stir controversy especially in the House of Representatives where such a provision has been defeated several times in the recent past.
On the global front, many other developed countries like in Europe have advanced abortions laws, allowing women to safe abortion. Something that has been lauded by global human rights movements. However, in some other countries in Africa and Asia abortion laws do not exist, and where they exist they are rarely taken seriously.
Women’s movements have equally pushed the issue of Planned Parenthood across the globe with the same vigor as with which they have been pushing for abortion. In the US and most other developed countries, activities initiated by organizations and institutions working to deliver contraceptives have enabled many families plan with ease the future of their lives and families. Access to contraceptives and knowledge about there is more accessible today in almost every country today.
Despite that, women in underdeveloped countries continue to face difficulties in not only access to contraceptives but also access to knowledge about them. This has rendered many women unable to control their families.
The above are few of the economic and social issues in the world. These issues, whenever confronted pose big challenges to human beings anywhere in the world. Failure to enact favorable minimum wages can render populations poor. Gun control is an idea that has helped many countries curb the rising cases of mass shooting, robbery and other incidences of assault. Countries that have been unable to enact tough gun laws continue to suffer from the social repercussions as well as political pressures to change the laws. And lastly, Planned Parenthood and abortion which is both an economic and social issue continue to challenge many people across the globe. Efficient Planned Parenthood and support abortion laws are lessening both social and economic challenges, especially to women. Further supportive laws can do more to emancipate families from getting families they cannot support.