Social Security Media Monitor


Social Security Media Monitor

The Social Security Media Monitor offers a selection of social security news articles from media around the world. While every effort is made to ensure accuracy, the ISSA is not responsible for the content of external sites.

26 October 2020
IMF: Morocco’s Pandemic Social Protection Solutions a ‘Success Story’ (20.10.2020) Morocco established several innovative digital solutions to increase the number of beneficiaries of social protection schemes during the pandemic.

8 October 2020
Extreme poverty set for first rise since 1998, World Bank warns

BBC News (07.10.2020) Extreme poverty is set to rise this year for the first time in more than two decades, with coronavirus expected to push up to 115 million people into that category, the World Bank has said.

8 October 2020
Opinion: Basic income: a BIG disappointment

Development Pathways (08.10.2020) COVID-19 has sparked a mass of interest in “basic income”. South Africa’s Minister of Social Development has advocated it; Spain has promised it on a permanent basis; UNDP has argued for it globally (at least on a temporary basis)... But the more you look at basic income, the less attractive it seems, at least from a social protection perspective.

6 October 2020
Digital Technology in Social Assistance Transfers for COVID-19 Relief: Lessons from Selected Cases (Sept 2020) Many countries have launched unprecedented relief packages to cushion the economic and social impact of the COVID-19 pandemic. This short review considers some initial lessons emerging from selected countries around the use of digital technology to implement these government-to-people (G2P) social transfer programs. Information is still limited on how well the programs have functioned; in particular, there is a dearth of rapid demand-side survey evidence on the experience of beneficiaries receiving transfers and the likely magnitudes of inclusion and exclusion errors. Nevertheless, the emerging picture provides some indications of how investments in digital systems and their deployment along the social transfer value chain have been facilitating the response. Lessons from the COVID-19-related scale-up of social assistance can be harnessed by developing countries to rethink and strengthen the architecture of social protection systems in the future.

1 October 2020
Going Viral : COVID-19 and the Accelerated Transformation of Jobs in Latin America and the Caribbean (28.09.2020) The economic impact of COVID-19 is unprecedented in size and scope. It has quickly evolved from a health emergency into an employment crisis. It also has far-reaching implications for workers beyond the immediate employment effects, as it most likely has accelerated the transformation process of jobs that had already started in the region and the world. This book focuses on three important pre-pandemic trends observed in the region—namely, premature deindustrialization, servicification of the economy, and task automation—that were significantly changing the labor market landscape in the region and that have been accelerated by the crisis.

29 September 2020
Opinion: Renewing welfare through universal entitlement: lessons from Covid-19 (24.09.2020) The pandemic has brought into focus the social contract between income and contribution which can underpin a solidaristic welfare state.

24 September 2020
Public employment services: Digital channels improve access to employment support (26.08.2020) A new ILO policy brief shows how public employment services are using technology to increase the help available to people whose jobs have been affected by COVID-19.

22 September 2020
Financing gaps in social protection: Global estimates and strategies for developing countries in light of the COVID-19 crisis and beyond (17.09.2020) Closing the social protection coverage gap, worsened by COVID-19, will require additional sources of financing.

8 September 2020
Netherlands: Parliament agrees to Dutch pensions reform but questions remain

IPE (15.07.2020) Despite heavy opposition resistance against “breaking down the world’s best pensions system”, the Dutch parliament agreed yesterday to the switch to a new defined contribution (DC) contract which includes a lifecycle system and personal pension pots. However, many questions on implementation remain.

21 August 2020
Addressing the Economic Impacts of the COVID-19 Crisis in South Asia through Universal Lifecycle Transfers

Development Pathways (2020) The COVID-19 pandemic has triggered a truly global shock: the necessary measures taken to control the spread of the virus have resulted in a major economic and human crisis. The crisis is unprecedented and requires unprecedented measures. By providing families with cash so that national consumption is increased, a fiscal stimulus should enable countries to lower the depth of any recession and, importantly, strengthen the speed of their economic recovery with the potential for higher economic growth.

21 August 2020
Policy Brief: The Impact of COVID-19 on the Arab Region An Opportunity to Build Back Better

UNSDG  (July 2020) The COVID-19 pandemic has exposed serious fault lines and vulnerabilities in societies, institutions and economies all around the world. The Arab region, home to 436 million people, initially kept transmission and mortality rates lower than the global average but more recent trends are cause for concern, especially in light of fragmented health care and insufficient primary care in many countries. The pandemic has also magnified many decades-long challenges. These include violence and conflict; inequalities; unemployment; poverty; inadequate social safety nets; human rights concerns; insufficiently responsive institutions and governance systems; and an economic model that has not yet met the aspirations of all. The consequences of the pandemic are likely to be deep and long-lasting. 

20 August 2020
Germany trials a universal basic income for 120 citizens

World Economic Forum (20.08.2020) Germany is about to become the latest country to trial a universal basic income, starting a three-year study of how it affects the economy and recipients' well-being. As part of the study, 120 people will receive €1,200, or about $1,430, each month for three years — an amount just above Germany's poverty line — and researchers will compare their experiences with another group of 1,380 people who will not receive the payments.

11 August 2020
Temporary Basic Income (TBI)

UNDP (23.07.2020) This paper provides estimates for a Temporary Basic Income (TBI), a minimum guaranteed income above the poverty line, for vulnerable people in 132 developing countries. A TBI amounts to between 0.27 and 0.63 per cent of their combined GDPs, depending on the policy choice: i. top-ups on existing average incomes in each country up to a vulnerability threshold; ii. lump-sum transfers that are sensitive to cross-country differences in the median standard of living; or, iii. lump-sum transfers that are uniform regardless of the country where people live. Unconditional emergency cash transfers can mitigate the worst immediate effects of the COVID-19 crisis on poor and near-poor households that do not currently have access to social assistance or insurance protection. A temporary basic income is within reach and can inform a larger conversation about how to build comprehensive social protection systems that make the poor and near-poor more resilient to economic downturns in the future.

11 August 2020
Europe: Guidelines to protecting seasonal workers in the context of Coronavirus (16.07.2020) The European Commission presents Guidelines to ensure the protection of seasonal workers in the EU in the context of the coronavirus pandemic. It provides guidance to national authorities, labour inspectorates, and social partners to guarantee the rights, health and safety of seasonal workers, and to ensure that seasonal workers are aware of their rights. Cross-border seasonal workers enjoy a broad set of rights, but given the temporary nature of their work, they can be more vulnerable to precarious working and living conditions. The coronavirus pandemic has given more visibility to these conditions, and in some cases exacerbated them. In some cases such problems can increase the risk of COVID-19 clusters.

11 August 2020
Morocco: Social welfare protection to cover all Moroccans in five years

The North Africa Post (04.08.2020) Morocco will expand social welfare protection to all its citizens within five years through a gradual approach, said Finance Minister Mohammed Benchaaboun, after King Mohammed VI urged in the State of the Nation speech on July 29 speeding up such a national project. Benchaaboun said the plan will proceed gradually with the first phase (2021-2023) focusing on the generalization of mandatory health insurance and family allowances followed by a second phase (2024-2025) to enlist citizens in pension funds and launch unemployment benefits.

6 August 2020
Bolivia: Beneficiarios de Renta Dignidad pueden autorizar a familiares realizar cobro (02.08.2020) Para evitar que las personas adultas se contagien en las filas, el beneficiario podrá autorizar a un familiar para el cobro en su representación, mediante nota impresa o escrita a mano, firmada o autorizada con su huella dactilar.

24 July 2020
Building back better after COVID-19: How social protection can help countries prepare for the impacts of climate change (14.07.2020) While the world is still in the midst of dealing with the health and socio-economic impacts of the COVID-19 (coronavirus) shock, one key lesson is already emerging: Social protection is proving its potential as an emergency instrument to protect affected households. Countries with strong social protection systems, underpinned by inclusive personal identification systems, comprehensive social registries with household information and robust digital payment systems, have been able to ramp up support to their impacted populations faster and more effectively. 
The response to the COVID-19 shock shows how “adaptive” social protection can expand on a temporary basis in response to a shock by expanding to a larger pool of beneficiaries or by providing larger benefits (or both).  


23 July 2020
Temporary Basic Income Could Help Curb Virus, U.N. Says

Time (23.07.2020) Temporary basic income payments could stem the spread of the coronavirus pandemic by allowing the world’s poorest people to stay at home, according to a new report from the United Nations Development Programme.

14 July 2020
After coronavirus, telemedicine is here to stay (07.07.2020) The COVID-19 pandemic is accelerating the long-anticipated surge in telemedicine services worldwide. Consulting a health care provider over phone, video or text has become the new normal for many non-urgent medical needs, while the crisis has sparked renewed interest in digital tools that can test and monitor at-risk patients safely in their homes.

13 July 2020
From Crisis Comes Opportunity: Spain’s Basic Income Response to COVID-19 - Evidence for Action (01.07.2020) The Government of Spain recently launched a national ‘Basic Income scheme’ (‘Ingreso Minimo Vital’), for extremely poor households and vulnerable groups. The means-tested programme is expected to reach approximately 2.5 million people, who will receive between €462 and €1,015 per month per household depending on the number of household members. Total household income and wealth determines whether a household receives the benefit, and applicants should be between 23 and 65 years of age and have legal residence in Spain of at least one year. There is also a condition of being registered as a job seeker. The programme is expected to cost €3,000 million.