The central idea is to create a Global Fund for Social Protection (GFSP) as a solidarity based financing mechanism to help countries design, implement and, to a limited extent, finance national floors of social protection. Social Protection Floors (SPFs) are direct and fast-acting poverty relief mechanisms that can save millions of lives and alleviate misery in further millions of cases.
The 184 members of the International Labour Organisation have adopted the ILO recommendation No. 202 on National Floors of Social Protection.
From the beginning the SPF has been supported by the Global Coalition for Social Protection Floors of about 90 NGOs and Trade Union Federations. It has been endorsed at different occasions by the UN, most recently in February 2015 by the UN Committee on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights. It is also mentioned as a target in the draft SDG One and Ten suggested by the Open Working Group on SDGs and in the Zero Draft of the Outcome Document of the Third Financing for Development Conferenceto be held in Addis Ababa in July of this year.
What is missing at this stage is a dedicated financing facility that enables the global community of nations to systematically, consistently and sustainably support national efforts to reduce poverty, insecurity and inequality through social protection. This gap could be filled by a Fund dedicated to social protection.
The core function of a GFSP could be to help countries to develop the analytical and administrative capacity for operating effectively and efficiently national social protection floors. Hence, the Mandate of the Fund should be twofold:
- provide technical support for national efforts to plan and design national SPFs and the training of national planning and administrative staff,
- co-finance of SPF transfers in exceptional cases.
The fund could be financed from a combination of different sources. Some options are:
- Development Aid of industrialised countries,
- Earmarked global, international or national sources. A mechanism for global financing (or the re-financing of national investments) could be national, regional or global financial transaction taxes.
The financing of social protection should eventually be based on sustainable and sufficient national resources, and a fair international trade and financial system.