Monday, October 29, 2018

Easing the social exclusion of disadvantaged groups

The impacts of social protection on poverty and inequality are well documented. However, less research has been carried out on its effects on disadvantaged or otherwise vulnerable social groups, some of whom clearly enjoy better coverage than others. Arguably, the most notable advance in recent decades has been the extension of oldage pensions. Close to 68 per cent of older persons received a pension in 2016 (United Nations, 2017a). At the same time, only 28 per cent of persons with severe disabilities received disability benefits, only 35 per cent of children enjoyed social protection, and just 22 per cent of unemployed workers received unemployment benefits (United Nations, 2017a).

Whether social protection addresses the needs of these groups depends on coverage but also on the adequacy of transfers. In some cases, the benefits received may be insufficient to guarantee income security and to close the income gaps among groups. Chapters II to VII highlight some of the disadvantages faced by each group, including gaps in coverage and lessons learned in addressing them

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