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Social Protection: A Right For All, Or A Privilege For A Few?

For more than half a century, social protection has been firmly anchored as a human right that States are obligated to guarantee. The COVID-19 pandemic has highlighted the critical role well-designed, coordinated and implemented social protection systems play in building resilience and mitigating risks faced by all individuals throughout life.

Strong social protection responses are needed today to achieve the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and address ongoing challenges such as poverty and inequality, as well as emerging ones stemming from population aging, migration, urbanization and employment. Despite this knowledge, the region’s investment in social protection is among the lowest in the world and gaps in coverage are alarmingly high.

This Regional Conversation, held in partnership with the ILO Regional Office for Asia and the Pacific, aims to discuss the need for broadening social protection, drawing from the perspectives of a wide range of stakeholders, such as Ministers from member States, nominated government representatives for the 6th session of the Committee on Social Development, academia and civil society.

At this event, ESCAP and the ILO Regional Office for Asia and the Pacific will also jointly launch their first-ever regional flagship publication on social protection - The Protection We Want: Social Outlook for Asia and the Pacific. Among others, the report finds that about half of the region’s population has no social protection coverage and only a handful of countries have comprehensive social protection systems with relatively broad coverage.

Members of the media and public are invited to view the event and launch via Youtube webcast: https://bit.ly/WatchRC5.

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