GCSPF e-Newsletter #77 – October 2022

e-GCSPF #77 - October 2022
 

Contributions to the discussion on Social Protection in South America

   
 

With the aim of strengthening the political incidence of civil society in favor of social protection in South America, a cycle of conferences with the participation of various organizations of civil society (e.g. feminists, trade unions, ecumenical, etc.) and experts in the field is taking place online. It is necessary an official care policy which contemplate supports and complements care work and defends the recognition of the "right to care", gender equality and human development. Likewise, ways of financing social protection are explored, including the creation of a global fund.
The videoconference “What the pandemic left us: necessary transformations” will take place online on Thursday, October 13, 2022 at 2:00 p.m. GMT-3. This conference will be in Spanish.
These activities are organized by Ciedur, Red de Género y Comercio, Social Watch and the Global Coalition for Social Protection Floors.

   
   
 

Webinar Invitation: Work Bank, IMF and Universal Social Protection following COVID-19: The Good, the Bad and the Unclear

   
 

Representatives from different CSOs, unions and workers’ organisations will share their perspectives on whether, and if so, how, IFIs have changed their position on social protection in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic. Based on newly published evidence, we will discuss what is new regarding IFI’s engagement on social protection, what counts as progress, and what are areas where IFIs may continue to fall short on realising the right to social protection for all.
Thursday, October 20, 2022 2 PM GMT+1
Register - Read more

   
   
 

2022 SWESD World Conference SEOUL

   
 

The Joint World Conference on Social Work, Education and Social Development 2022, under the theme “Redefining Social Policy and Social Work Practice in A Post-Pandemic Society: Social Welfare Programs and Social Work Education at A Crossroads” will be held from October 26 (Wed) to October 28 (Fri), 2022 in Seoul, South Korea. Hosted internationally by International Council on Social Welfare, and International Association of Schools of Social Work and hosted locally by Korea National Council on Social Welfare, Korean Council on Social Welfare Education, Korea Association of Social Workers, and Seoul Welfare Foundation. Read more
Event “Delivering on the commitment to universal social protection: the quest for innovative solutions” co-organized by the Global Coalition. Date and time to be confirmed.

   
   
 

How low- and middle- income countries can implement universal social protection progressively

   
 

Apologies, this webinar has been postponed. We will reschedule this event to a later date, and we will be in touch soon with more details.
There is broad consensus that expansion of social protection is a necessary response to the global food and economic crises. But an immediate reaction of countries when approached with the solution of universal social protection is “we can’t afford that!”. Today, the teams at ACT Church of Sweden, Development Pathways and Action Against Hunger show how, in actual fact, universality can be affordable.
Daisy Sibun will be launching a new paper, ‘Can a leopard change its spots? A critical analysis of the World Bank’s ‘progressive universalism’ approach to social protection’. The paper scrutinises the justification through which the World Bank continues to promote poverty targeted programmes, despite its more recent high-level support for the idea of universal social protection, and contrasts it with the human rights-based approach to social protection as promoted by the ILO. Friday, October 7, 2022 - 2 PM - 3 PM CEST - Register - Read more

   
   
 

Global People's Assembly

   
 

The Global People's Assembly is a self organised space during the United Nations General Assembly high level wee with the aim of bringing the voices of the people to the forefront, at a time where decision makers engage in high level debate without people's involvement.
This year's Global People's Assembly took place online from Tuesday 20th September - Thursday 22nd September 2022. Read the Declaration and the recordings of the sessions
The Global Coalition is co-organizer of the Global People’s Assembly and several members participated in the sessions.
Isabel Ortiz (Global Social Justice Switzerland) participated in the opening session.
Sylvia Beales Gelber (APSP and member of the coalition core group) participated in the African Assembly and spoke on the right to universal social protection in Africa and the call for the global fund.
Florian Juergens-Grant (WIEGO) participated on behalf of the GCSPF at the session Leave No Woman Behind on Wednesday 21st September.

   
   
 

Report “End Austerity: A global report on budget cuts and harmful social reforms”

   
 

A new report titled “End Austerity: A global report on budget cuts and harmful social reforms”, shows that 85 percent of the world’s population will live in the grip of austerity measures by 2023. This trend is likely to continue until at least 2025, when 75 percent of the global population (129 countries) could still be living under these conditions.
Austerity measures include scaling down social protection programs for women, children, the elderly and other vulnerable people, leaving only a small safety net for a fraction of the poorest. They also include cutting or capping the wages and number of teachers and healthcare workers, eliminating subsidies, privatizing or commercializing public services such as energy, water and public transportation, and reducing pensions and workers’ rights.
The report is co-authored by Isabel Ortiz and Matthew Cummins and co-published by ActionAid, Arab Watch Coalition (AWC), Eurodad, Financial Transparency Coalition (FTC), Global Social Justice, Initiative for Policy Dialogue (IPD), International Trade Union Confederation (ITUC), Latindadd, Public Services International (PSI), The Bretton Woods Project, Third World Network (TWN) and Wemos. Read more

   
   
 

ITUC response to the World Bank’s Social Protection and Jobs Compass

   
 


The ITUC has welcomed a much-anticipated publication by the World Bank “Charting a Course Towards Universal Social Protection : Resilience, Equity, and Opportunity for All” but has a number of considerable reservations to some of the policy messages, as well as the rigor of the analysis underpinning some of the policies proposed. Read more

   
   
 

Report of the Conference: Social Protection, How to make it happen?

   
 

Meryame Kitir, Belgian Minister for Development Cooperation; Jutta Urpilainen, European commissioner for international partnerships ; Shahra Razavi Director of the Social Protection Department of the International Labour Organisation (ILO); Olivier De Schutter, Special Rapporteur on extreme poverty and human rights; Sharon Burrow, General Secretary of the International Trade Union Confederation (ITUC) and many other partners in international cooperation participated in the Conference “Universal Social Protection, How to make it happen?”. The report of the Belgian dialogue USP2030 is now available in French. Read more

   
   
   

JOIN US TO ACHIEVE SOCIAL PROTECTION FOR ALL

GLOBAL COALITION FOR SOCIAL PROTECTION FLOORS - GCSPF

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The Global People’s Assembly is a self organised space during the United Nations General Assembly high level with the aim of bringing the voices of the people to the forefront, at a time where decision makers engage in high level debate without people’s involvement. The 2022 Global People’s Assembly took place online from Tuesday 20th September – Thursday 22nd September 2022.

A Declaration developed with inputs from over 30 national and regional people’s assemblies, was adopted at the three–day Global People’s Assembly on Tuesday 22 of September, organised by Global call to Action Against Poverty (GCAP) and allies, during the 77th session of the UN General Assembly. “The time to act is now,” the group calls for a shared political and economic power equally between the global north and global south, for global democracy and a robust civic space. Read the Declaration.

The recordings of the sessions are also available.

The Global Coalition for Social Protection Floors is co-organizer of the Global People’s Assembly and several members participated in the sessions.

Isabel Ortiz (Global Social Justice Switzerland) participated in the opening session.

Sylvia Beales Gelber (APSP and member of the coalition core group) participated in the African Assembly and spoke on the right to universal social protection in Africa and the call for the global fund. Her presentation is here.

Florian Juergens-Grant (WIEGO) participated on behalf of the GCSPF at the session Leave No Woman Behind on 21st September. His presentation is here.

The webinar the “Work Bank, IMF and Universal Social Protection following COVID-19: The Good, the Bad and the Unclear” will take place on 20 October at 14:00 GMT+1.

Register here

Speakers

Lena Simet, Senior Researcher on Poverty and Inequality, Human Rights Watch

Tavengwa Nhongo, Executive Director, African Platform for Social Protection

Daisy Sibun, Social Policy Officer, Development Pathways

Isabel Ortiz, Director, Global Social Justice Program, Initiative for Policy Dialogue

Evelyn Astor, Economic and Social Policy Advisor, International Trade Union Confederation

Ghislaine Saizonou Broohm, Coordinator of the Department of Equality and Social, ITUC Africa

Florian Juergens-Grant, Project Manager, Women in Informal Employment: Globalizing and Organizing

Moderator Rachel Moussié, Director of Programmes, Women in Informal Employment: Globalizing and Organizing

The devastation of the COVID-19 pandemic as well as the ongoing crises driving up the cost of food and basic necessities for many around the world, highlight the urgent need for all countries to make rapid progress towards achieving universal social protection.

While human rights and international labour standards clearly recognise that ensuring adequate social protection is a responsibility of national governments, international cooperation plays an important role in supporting countries to realise those responsibilities. This may come in the form of financial support to countries struggling to finance the full required social protection system, as well as technical advice on the design and implementation. International organisations also influence international and national debates on what social protection should look like, and who should pay for it.

International financial institutions (IFIs), such as the World Bank and International Monetary Fund (IMF) that offer access to financing for cash-strapped governments can be particularly influential. Both have scaled-up their engagement in social protection in recent years: The World Bank is by far the largest external donor of social protection, while the IMF has recently published its first strategy outlining when and how to engage on social spending.

Civil society organisations, unions, workers’ organisations and some UN agencies have generally been critical of IFIs focus and track-record on social protection, stressing their perceived lack of regard to rights and labour standards, as well as their consistent emphasis on exclusionary safety nets, conditionalities and privatisation.

Then COVID-19 happened, and it seemed like everything was going to change. During the height of the crisis, the IMF has supported higher expenditure on health care and cash transfer programmes even when it meant higher fiscal deficit and public debt. A few months ago, the IMF published its first gender strategy. The World Bank likewise provided substantive support to the expansion of social protection during the pandemic and its brand-new social protection strategy is explicitly framed around achieving USP.

In this webinar, representatives from different CSOs, unions and workers’ organisations will share their perspectives on whether, and if so, how, IFIs have changed their position on social protection in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic. Based on newly published evidence, we will discuss what is new regarding IFI’s engagement on social protection, what counts as progress, and what are areas where IFIs may continue to fall short on realising the right to social protection for all.

Organisers:Action Contre La Faim, ACF (Action Against Hunger)Act Church of SwedenThe Africa Platform for Social Protection, APSPDevelopment PathwaysInitiative for Policy DialogueGlobal Coalition for Social Protection FloorsHuman Rights WatchInternational Trade Union Confederation, ITUCAfrican Regional Organisation of the International Trade Union Confederation, ITUC-Africa/CSI-Afrique and Women in Informal Employment: Globalizing and Organizing, WIEGO.

Resources:

Human Rights Watch: IMF/World Bank: Targeted Safety Net Programs Fall Short on Rights Protection

WIEGO and ITUC Africa: Building Forward Better: Investing in Africa’s Workers (also in French and Spanish)

WIEGO: World Bank’s Push for Individual Savings Provides Little Protection for Crisis-hit Workers (also in French and Spanish)

Initiative for Policy Dialogue (IPD), Global Social Justice (GSJ), International Confederation of Trade Unions (ITUC), Public Services International (PSI), ActionAid International, Arab Watch Coalition, Bretton Woods Project, Eurodad, Financial Transparency Coalition, Latindadd, Third World Network (TNW)

ITUC response to the World Bank’s Social Protection and Job Compass

ITUC response to the IMF’s Framework on Social Spending

Wemos: END AUSTERITY. A Global Report on Budget Cuts and Harmful Social Reforms in 2022-25

Development Pathways and Act Church of Sweden, Social registries: a short history of abject failure

Act Church of Sweden, Action Against Hunger France, Development Pathways, Can a leopard change its spots?

Read more at socialprotection.org

The Global Coalition for Social Protection Floors submitted a written statement to the 47th regular session of the UN Human Rights Council (HRC) held from 21 June to 9 July 2021. . This session considered the report of the Special Rapporteur on extreme poverty and human rights on “The Global Fund for Social Protection: International Solidarity in the Service of Poverty Eradication”. The statement is here.

(General Secretary of the International Trade Union Confederation, ITUC)

(UN Special Rapporteur on extreme poverty and human rights)

(Executive Director of the Global Initiative for Economic, Social and Cultural Rights)

(Evangelical Lutheran Church in Tanzania – ELCT)

(Project Officer, Church’s Auxiliary for Social Action)

(Director, the Africa Platform for Social Protection – APSP) guide you through different aspects of this new Global Fund explaining why we need the Fund and how it would work.

Civil Society Call for a Global Fund for Social Protection

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.

Read the Call

SP&PFM Programme

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.

Read more

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