Development Pathways supports the global campaign ‘Social Security For All: A Key Pillar for a New Eco-Social Contract’, launching on October 4th, to build pressure and highlight the importance of universal social security ahead of the annual meetings of the World Bank and International Monetary Fund.
Social security is a fundamental human right and provides the foundation of a sustainable economy and a just society. It provides support to individuals to address the risks they face across their lifecycles – from birth through to the end of life. Yet, only one in ﬁve people in the world enjoys access to adequate social security.
The World Bank and the International Monetary Fund (IMF) will meet in Marrakech, Morocco between 9- 15 October. Development Pathways is supporting the Global Coalition for Social Protection Floors in its demand for an end to the daily injustice that leaves the majority of the world’s population without access to social security. The campaign demands that:
- The IFIs commit to supporting states towards realising the right to social security by setting up or strengthening rights-aligned universal social protection systems, beginning with the establishment of social protection ﬂoors.
- The World Bank should immediately stop developing, and phase out existing, poverty-targeted programmes and replace them with tax-ﬁnanced universal schemes. It should strengthen a fair distribution of resources by coupling universal social security with ﬁscal reforms that reduce inequality.
- The IMF should support equitable and sustainable public social security systems in accordance with international standards that include adequate employers’ contributions and ensure income security.
- The IMF should stop austerity policies that increase social spending in one sector at the expense of other rights and end any demands for means-tested social security payments. It should redesign programmes to consistently promote universal social security and universal good quality public services. It should ensure that spending on health, education, and social security meets, at a minimum, international benchmarks as a percentage of GDP and national budgets.
Development Pathways’ CEO, Stephen Kidd, says: “The push by IFIs to promote poverty-targeted social assistance schemes – following the poor relief model used by Europe in the 19th Century – across lower- income countries has meant that the vast majority of those living on low incomes have been excluded from social security, while national social contracts have been undermined as a result of citizens losing trust in their governments.
It’s time that the IFIs got behind a modern system of universal lifecycle social security that ensures that everyone can receive protection from childhood to old age and, importantly, helps rebuild trust in government, democracy and strong social contracts.”
The campaign will launch on 4th October with an online event highlighting testimonies from Argentina, Chile, Sri Lanka and Uganda on the challenges of poverty targeting and pension privatisation, and a call for participants to endorse this timely global campaign.