Social Security: Oxfam%20GB%20Wksp%20Ethiopia%20CA%20Paper%201%2020-24 11

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Workshop on the State of Livelihoods in Africa 21 – 23 November 2007 Addis Ababa, Ethiopia Sharing strategies for Change: State of AU Policies, Frameworks, and Treaties Presentation by Charles Abbey, Regional President, Central and West Africa International Council on Social Welfare Global Office International Council on Social Welfare C/O MOVISIE, P.O. Box 19129, 3501 DC Utrecht The Netherlands Mobile 31 (0) 62352 7666 Phone 31 30 7892226 Fax 31 30 789 21 11 Reg
  Workshop on the State of Livelihoods in Africa 21 – 23 November 2007Addis Ababa, EthiopiaSharing strategies for Change: State of AU Policies,Frameworks, and TreatiesPresentation by Charles Abbey, Regional President,Central and West AfricaInternational Council on Social Welfare Global OfficeInternational Council on Social Welfare C/O MOVISIE,P.O. Box 19129,3501 DC UtrechtThe NetherlandsMobile 31 (0) 62352 7666Phone 31 30 7892226Fax 31 30 789 21 Regional Office for Central and West AfricaP.O. Box CT 3918, Cantonments, Accra, GhanaPhone 233 21  This paper covers: ã Global economics and social policy; ã Copenhagen and beyond ã Social work, Social protection and Social development ã Moving from global to regional development ã National and regional economics and social policy; ã The current reality of civil society intervention in nationaland regional policies ã Regional Social Policy agendas ã Lessons from other regions ã Civil society influence in regions ã Possibilities for Cooperation ã Conclusion    This session will look at1.The gap between existing policies and practice.2. Existing continental best practices including modelconstitutions, laws and budgets.3. What should CSOs be prioritising?Global economics and social policy Globalisation is proving to be a challenge for social policy. Theglobal economic institutions including the World Bank and theInternational Monetary Fund have consistently promoted a macroeconomic policy of neoliberalism i . The global South does notbelieve it can outweigh the influence on these institutions by theglobal North. “The south claims the north is co-opting internationalorganizations to their interests, and the north criticizes the southfor giving low priority to a progressive social agenda, making itvery difficult to find a compromise agreement.”  1 In contrast to global macro economic policy there is no consistencyin social policy at a global level. Within the UN there are multipleagencies working in social policy and social development. Inaddition, outside the UN there are influential agencies including theInternational Labour Organisation (ILO) and a myriad of international non government organisations providing directservice and advocacy. There is no one social policy to bind them.On the other hand macro economists are committed largely to aphilosophy of neoliberalism.It is unlikely that global institutions with a remit for socialdevelopment will arrive at a consistent macro social policy. I do notexpect to see the major financial institutions revise their macroeconomic commitments and move away from neoliberal policies. Ido not expect to see a reconstruction of the UN and relatedagencies to become a major coherent force in social development.Attempts by the UN to review their relations with civil society havefailed. The opportunity for those interested in a social developmentagenda lies at national and regional levels. 1 Deacon B, Ortiz I, Zelenev S (2007) Regional Social Policy  DESA Working Paper No. 37Department of Economic and Social Affairs, New York.  Social work  Social Work refers nowadays to a broad field of social actions, socialprofessions and social services. The change from welfare state to “workfare” state is challenging social work to move from justproviding activities and services. Civil society and individual citizensare expected to be responsible for their own employability andlooking for their own work. But in a society that rewardsindividualism the state needs to guarantee civil, human and socialrights. We are not seeing the end of the welfare state. The state stillneeds to be responsible for guaranteeing equal opportunities. Anunfettered market does not provide nor can it guaranteeopportunities for all.The specific working rules of social welfare are not enough bythemselves, especially to meet the needs of those who areparticularly vulnerable. The level above which a person may behelped varies from country to country. Social protection Social protection protects people from the great risks in life and tosome extent it comprises a re-allocation of means. Social protectionsystems all over the world are under pressure. The global economyhas increased social costs. Social protection systems are understrain because of deficiencies in global regulation, highunemployment, “indecent” or unacceptable labour conditions,massive migrations poor to rich countries and migration from ruralareas to urban areas. Demographic trends, like the ageing of societies, are threatening the financial viability of many socialprotection systems. New risks are emerging, such as dependencyand the need for long term care, sanitary crises or environmentalissues. Social protection has to be re-oriented. Social development  Social development can be defined as the process of planned socialchange designed to improve the welfare of the population as awhole in conjunction with economic development and environmentalprotection. A distortion of the concept of social development hasemerged. Some governments and international financial institutionshave emphasized poverty reduction, which is part of the problem,rather than social development. This has led to the implementationof targeting policies aimed at a part of society not the whole society.Most experts in social development advocate more comprehensivestrategies aimed in particular at community development,strengthening civil society and guaranteeing human and socialrights. An index of human development is now built to take intoaccount a lot of non economic ratios, about education, equity, nondiscrimination, child mortality…
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