The Global Coalition for Social Protection Floors (GCSPF), together with Gray Panthers and the International Movement ATD Fourth World, delivered a written statement at the 62nd session of the Commission for Social Development 2024 which priority theme is “Fostering Social Development and Social Justice through Social Policies to accelerate Progress on the Implementation of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and to achieve the overarching goal of poverty eradication”.
Members of the Global Coalition delivered statements to the CSocD, that are published in the section NGO Written Statements.
Statement delivered by the GCSPF
The Global Coalition for Social Protection Floors (GCSPF) consists of more than 120 CSOs, NGOs and Trade Unions from all parts of the world, united in their motivation to realize social protection for all. We welcome the theme of the 62nd Commission of Social Development of “Fostering social development and social justice through social policies to accelerate progress on the implementation of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and to achieve the overarching goal of poverty eradication”.
Halfway to Agenda 2030, we are nowhere near achieving the Sustainable Development Goals. Member States are failing to commit to the urgent action required to accelerate response towards poverty eradication and rising inequalities, to uphold human rights, to make tangible progress on gender equality, to tackle violence and discrimination of all types, to end ageism and xenophobia and to take clear and lasting decisions to halt and reverse climate change. We need clear pathways for social and climate justice, to achieve peace and the end of militarism, and for all to double down on efforts for the full implementation of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. Governments must match the political determination and persistence of civil society and activists, many of whom face significant dangers in calling out our failure to achieve the SDGs, which if allowed to happen will be catastrophic for humanity and our planet.
We are extremely concerned that with seven years to go, barely 15% of the targets of the SDGS have been reached and the transformative vision of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development is in jeopardy. The principle of leaving no one behind and of upholding human rights is fundamental to achieving the topic of this Commission. It is imperative therefore that we focus on the full implementation of target 3 of Goal 1.
Universal Social Protection (USP) and the full implementation of Social Protection Floors in all countries must be at the heart of social and economic policies required to achieve the SDGs. Universal Social Protection is a right enshrined in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. USP is an essential lever to realise the sustainable development goals and their targets (specifically SDGs 1.3, 3.8, 5.4, 8.5 and 10.4) and underpins the global commitment to end poverty and reduce inequalities for all people within and between countries (SDGs 1 and 10). USP is a driver of social development and affords agency and self determination to recipients over the life course. It is a core lever to tackle poverty and marginalisation. The inclusion of target 3 of Goal 1 to end poverty ‘to implement nationally appropriate social protection systems and measures for all, including floors, and by 2030 achieve substantial coverage of the poor and the vulnerable’ is a clear acknowledgment that social protection and social protection floors are recognized as foundational to ending poverty.
National floors of social protection are vital to leave no one behind. They ensure universal access to essential health care and basic income security across the life course and are a human right. However currently only 47% of the global population are effectively covered by at least one of the guarantees; in Africa this is a mere 18%. This is at a time when as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, climate change, ongoing conflicts and wars and highly volatile situations affecting millions of children and adults of all ages, the number of people facing acute food and economic insecurity has more than doubled - from 135 million in 2019 to 276 million in 2022.
In this challenging environment multiple studies have shown that ensuring a basic level of social protection for all is not only urgently needed now, but doable and affordable for most countries. It is entirely achievable through the solidarity and political will of the international community. And while many national governments are developing, financing, implementing and monitoring social protection floors, with the participation and monitoring of civil society, trade unions and informal worker organizations, and while generally and principally the financing of social protection systems must be within national budget frameworks, some countries will require temporary international co-financing of social protection floors, while they strengthen domestic resource mobilisation and digital and technical support in their establishment.
This is why the UN Secretary General, the International Labour Conference and the Un Special Rapporteur on Extreme Poverty and Human Rights have expressed their support for mechanisms to increase financing for SPFs including the establishment of a new international financing mechanism, such as a Global Fund for Social Protection.
A Global financing mechanism for Social Protection must be based on the principle of global solidarity, to support countries and their citizens to design, implement and, in specific cases, provide temporary co-financing for national social protection floors as described in ILO recommendation 202.
Over 200 civil society organizations and trade unions unite to call for a Global Fund for Social Protection to protect the most vulnerable during COVID-19 and beyond.
The programme Improving Synergies Between Social Protection and Public Finance Management provides medium-term support to multiple countries aiming to strengthen their social protection systems at a national level and ensure sustainable financing. The programme aims to support countries in their efforts towards achieving universal social protection coverage.
This initiative is implemented jointly by the ILO, Unicef, and the GCSPF.