GCSPF E-Newsletter #16 - October 2018

e-GCSPF # 16 - October 2018

The majority of the world’s population is not covered under any type of social protection scheme, and less than 30 per cent enjoy comprehensive coverage. Women, workers in the informal economy and workers in non-standard forms of employment are disproportionately under-protected.
This is in spite of the fact that social protection floors are essential tools in eliminating poverty, as well as driving factors in boosting employment, fostering skills development, formalising work, reducing inequality and achieving inclusive economic growth.
Trade unions and social protection experts from around the world have come together in Brussels this week to identify how financing social protection can and should be strengthened. Representatives from over 30 trade unions, along with academics, civil society organisations, government officials and international organisations discussed the range of options that governments have at their disposal to finance the extension of social protection to all people. They agreed that social protection floors for all are financially feasible in all countries and that governments need to get their priorities right to fund them. Read more

During the last meeting of the core group of the Global Coalition for Social Protection Floors (GCSPF) in Nairobi last January a number of national SPF platforms asked for more detailed information on how they can report on SPF implementation to international organizations1. There are three main international organizations or fora to which such reporting can be addressed: (i) the UN Human Rights Council (HRC) in Geneva, and in particular through the Committee for Economic, Social and Cultural Rights (CESCR). (ii) the High-Level Political Forum (HLPF) in New York, which oversees the implementation of the 2030 agenda and the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs); and (iii) the ILO in Geneva, which in 2012 adopted Recommendation No.202 on National Social Protection Floors.
National platforms are most effective when various civil society organizations and social organizations, such as trade unions, work closely together. They would also benefit from the support of other actors, such as academics, journalists, UN agencies such as UNDP, ILO, WHO, and UNICEF, as well as National Human Rights Institutions (NHRIs). Read more

GI-ESCR announces the first edition of the CESCR Yearbook for 2017. This annual publication provides a concise overview of the accomplishments of the Committee on Economic, Social and Cultural Right’s each year. The first edition covers the Committee’s work in 2017.
The Yearbook provides general information on the composition of the Committee as well as results related to its State reporting procedure, communications and working methods over the course of 2017. It also includes information on the Committee’s thematic work, which in 2017 entailed its Statement on the Duties of States Towards Refugees and Migrants under the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights as well as the adoption of a General Comment on State obligations under the Covenant, in the context of business activities. Read more

The future of work has become a popular theme for research in international organisations and institutes. The UN’s International Labour Organization has created a commission on the topic and will devote its 100th anniversary conference in 2019 to it.
The main themes of almost all the research have been the prediction of massive job dislocation, increased precarious work, downward pressure on wages and exacerbated inequality unless robust policies are put in place to protect workers’ interests. Even a recent IMF working paper modelling the impact of new technologies cautioned that without vigorous policy responses, “the labour share [of national income] declines substantially and overall inequality rises”.
The World Bank’s upcoming World Development Report 2019: The Changing Nature of Work, scheduled for publication in October, presents a vivid contrast to this understanding. Read more

Australia’s Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples have experienced some of the harshest effects of neoliberal intensification and its continuous pursuit of state welfare retraction and stigmatisation. Given the highly racialised nature of these measures, practitioners, activists and researchers concerned with the advancing of neoliberal principles in Australia have been mostly interested in Indigenous social policy.
To identify the potential impacts of the trends in disability social security retraction, this publication provides an overview of the changes to the DSP and then focuses on the implications for regional Australia. This publication raises significant questions about the impact of the national neoliberal retraction of social policy on regional towns. It also shows the kind of adjustments and policy responses that local government authorities harness for some of their most vulnerable populations in times of economic change. Finally, the publication discusses the potential effects on regional Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people with disabilities who are seeking access to the disability income support system but are frequently denied it due to the interstice of Aboriginality, disability and regionality, drawing upon theories of economic insecurity advanced by Bruce Western and colleagues. Read more

Magdalena Sepúlveda Carmona's affiliation with UNRISD started in early 2013. Based at UNRISD in Geneva through June 2015, she was the impetus behind the web-based resource platform Linking Social Protection and Human Rights; contributed to the project inception workshop for New Directions in Social Policy with a paper on "Human Rights, Poverty, and Social Policy"; and assisted the Director with partnerships and external relations.
Ms. Sepulveda was the United Nations Special Rapporteur on extreme poverty and human rights between May 2008 and June 2014. She is a Chilean lawyer who holds a Ph.D in International Human Rights Law from Utrecht University in the Netherlands; an LL.M in human rights law from the University of Essex in the United Kingdom and a post graduate diploma in comparative law from the Pontificia Universidad Catolica de Chile.
Ms. Sepúlveda has worked as a researcher at the Netherlands Institute for Human Rights, as a staff attorney at the Inter-American Court of Human Rights, and as the Co-Director of the Department of International Law and Human Rights of the United Nations-mandated University for Peace in San Jose, Costa Rica. She also served as a consultant to the Division of International Protection of UNHCR and to the Norwegian Refugee Council in Colombia. More recently she has been Research Director at the International Council on Human Rights Policy in Geneva. For more information please visit here



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Civil Society Call for a Global Fund for Social Protection

Civil society organizations and trade unions unite to call for a Global Fund for Social Protection to protect the most vulnerable.

Social Security for All

Civil society organizations and trade unions call governments and international financial institutions to make a commitment to create social security systems that enable everyone to realize their rights. Governments and financial institutions should end policies that have been failing millions of people.

SP&PFM Programme

The programme Improving Synergies Between Social Protection and Public Finance Management provided medium-term support to multiple countries aiming to strengthen their social protection systems at a national level and ensure sustainable financing. The programme aimed to support countries in their efforts towards achieving universal social protection coverage.
This initiative was implemented jointly by the ILO, Unicef, and the GCSPF.

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