Discuss about the Social Work for Wealth Inequality.
Issue: Rapidly Increasing Inequality in Australia
(Source: Douglas, et al., 2014)
The biggest issue which is prevailing in the nation is wealth inequality. The rich are getting richer and the poor are getting poorer. The wealth inequality is rising rapidly from last few decades. The inequality was observed in the mid-1970s when the earnings of the top tenth have been increased by a significant percentage i.e. 59 whereas the increase in the wages of the bottom tenth was just 15 percent. These figures clearly demonstrate the issue of wealth inequality (Douglas, et al., 2014). In the year 2009, there was more than 100 times increase in the wages of the top 20 CEOs of the nation. This has considerably shown that there is unfair wage structure taking place in Australia. The increased inequality resulted into up surged poverty (Douglas, et al., 2014).
There are various causes which gave rise to wealth inequality in Australia such as the governing economic paradigm inappropriate and inequitable taxation, decrease in the relative value of the transfer payments of few governments, inequalities related to education and theories prevailing in the nation related to inequality and capitalism (Norton, et al., 2014).
Need of Change
There is an extreme and significant need that these wealth inequality issues must be eliminate and for this there is a need of change in the wealth structure of the nation. There are several consequences of wealth inequality such as unequal admittance towards quality healthcare, nutritious food, education and housing. There is a greater risk of mental illness and cardiovascular diseases because of the precarious jobs and inadequate living conditions. Housing stress is another issue which is an outcome of wealth inequality in Australia. Increase in speculative investments, rapid increase of house prices, job insecurity, weakening of the working conditions and job losses are few other major consequences of wealth inequality (Saunders and Wong, 2013).
The Way it Should be Changed
To have a change in the wealth structure and to bring equality there is a need of change. And following are the changes which are required to be done to have optimistic outcomes.
- Re-establishment of better individual autonomy, welfare and probable health benefits
To effectively reduce the wealth inequality there must be adequate efforts and emphasis to be laid over the development of the personal autonomy, the health facilities and benefits provided to all the people and the well-being amenities. The more there will be emphasis over these elements the lesser will be chances of inequality to take place in the nation (Douglas, et al., 2014).
- Development in social mobility
There is a set tendency that the children of rich people tend to get all the facilities and amenities and they are the next generation of the rich class and same with the poor class. But if there will be improvements on the social mobility then it would relatively decrease the wealth inequalities in the nation. There must be adequate opportunities for all the children to grow and develop so that they can have improved social mobility and thus inequality can be controlled (Douglas, et al., 2014).
A More Efficient and Better Functioning Economy
If there will be improved economy there will be a direct impact over the issue of inequality. It is very well established notion that if the high income and high taxation nations generally have low inflation as well as low unemployment rates and thus there is increased well being and social satisfaction among the individuals. Therefore there must be increased number of investments in infrastructure, housing, health and education as this will result into increase equality in social mobility and growth opportunities (Ford, 2013).
Implementation of Policies for Reducing Inequality
There are various policies which are required to be implement in the nation for reducing the wealth inequality and obtaining a suitable and equitable living and working standards. Following are few policies which are required to be implemented:
- There should be a National Conversation regarding the issue of inequality, it major impacts and consequences as well as thee should be discussion related to eliminate this issue.
- There must be equitable and fair taxation reforms and adequate distribution of government revenues and proper disclosure of the financial statements.
- Fair funding reforms in context with schools so that there can be improved development of the next generations.
- Increase investments for child development so that there can be early childhood growth and improvements as well as uplifting of the disadvantaged groups.
- Setting of pensions and benefits appropriately (Douglas, et al., 2014).
- Job creation programs must be established in the more required and priority regions so that there can reduced rate of unemployment and every individual can get the equal opportunity to work.
- A National Research Program must be established so that there can be effective monitoring and test of the progress and growth of the effect of the interventions which has been taken place for the reduction of wealth inequality (Katic and Leigh, 2015.
Expected Benefits of Change
By implementing the above discussed changes thee can be number of benefits which are expected their effective implementation such as if there will be improved social mobility then it would assure that the coming generation need not be in the same wage structure and living standard, there will be an equitable opportunity given to the people to rise. With the improved economy there will be a balanced wage structure and decrease unemployment and poverty rates. It will also aid in increase the working conditions of the people. The major benefits will be driven by the implementation of the effective policies. The fair funding and increased investments will develop the living standards and conditions of the people and will provide them a fair living culture. The various programs will also support in providing clear results and will help in raking measurable actions for increased wealthy equality in the nation (Bagchi and Svejnar, 2015).
Strengths and Weaknesses of Change Proposal
By analyzing the change proposal it can be observed that there are number of strengths which are associated with the change proposal. It will offer extreme benefits and advantages to the people who are victims of wealth inequality as well as it will help in establishing an equitable national culture and democracy. The change proposal focuses on effective measures which can support the change program significantly. Therefore it can be evaluate that there are considerably no such weakness which is associated with the change proposal as well as it holds major strengths which can help in uplifting the living standards and wealth equality in Australia.
This change proposal presented here highly focuses upon reducing the wealth inequalities in Australia. The measures provided here to reduce the inequality are highly effective and their effective implementation can help in uplifting the living conditions and working standards of the people. These effective policies will also aid in reducing the poverty ratio of the nation. Thus it can be said that the change proposal is effective for managing equality in Australia.
Bagchi, S. and Svejnar, J., 2015. Does wealth inequality matter for growth? The effect of billionaire wealth, income distribution, and poverty. Journal of Comparative Economics, 43(3), pp.505-530.
Douglas, B., Friel, S., Denniss, R. and Morawetz, D., 2014. Advance Australia Fair? What to do about growing inequality in Australia. The Australian National University. Pp. 72. Accessed on: 18th October, 2016. Accessed from: https://www.australia21.org.au/wp-content/uploads/2014/06/Final-InequalityinAustraliaRepor-2.pdf
Ford, M., 2013. Achievement gaps in Australia: What NAPLAN reveals about education inequality in Australia. Race Ethnicity and Education, 16(1), pp.80-102.
Katic, P. and Leigh, A., 2015. Top Wealth Shares in Australia 1915–2012.Review of Income and Wealth.
Norton, M.I., Neal, D.T., Govan, C.L., Ariely, D. and Holland, E., 2014. The Not?So?Common?Wealth of Australia: Evidence for a Cross?Cultural Desire for a More Equal Distribution of Wealth. Analyses of Social Issues and Public Policy, 14(1), pp.339-351.
Saunders, P. and Wong, M., 2013. Examining Australian attitudes to inequality and redistribution. The Journal of Australian Political Economy, (71), p.51.