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The Challenges for Labour Law and Social Security at the Labour Law and Social Security Interface

PUTTICK, Keith (2016) The Challenges for Labour Law and Social Security at the Labour Law and Social Security Interface. In: Blanpain, R, Hendickx, F and Du Toit, D Labour Law and Social Progress - Holding the Line or Shifting the Boundaries? Bulletin of Comparative Labour Relations, 92 (92). Kluwer Law International, Alphen aan den Rijn, Netherlands, pp. 159-190. ISBN ISBN 978-90-411-6747-7

Labour Law & Social Progress - 22 April 2016 BCLR-92- 9 Keith Puttick.pdf - AUTHOR'S ACCEPTED Version (default)
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Abstract or description

The article’s focus is on the inter-action of labour and social security systems at the labour-social security interface and changes resulting from labour market transformations and the impact of austerity measures. A commentary is provided on the two systems’ difficulties in meeting the increasingly complex needs of national systems’ key stakeholders: workers and their families, employers, and the communities they serve. Among other things, it explores the mutualisation and demutualisation of risk and risk-costs, particularly in the context of the increasing dependence of workers and employers in low pay sectors on State systems of in-work support and wage subsidies, the continuing challenges posed by low productivity, and the challenges for systems' regulatory frameworks. The introductory section sets out the main arguments as follows:
Developing points from the author's preceding keynote paper in 2014 at the International Society of Labour and Social Security Law (ISLSSL) XI European Congress of Labour Law in Dublin - Social Security and State Support for the Wage-Work Bargain - Reconstructing Europe’s Floor of Social Protection - it argues that whilst there are a lot of remedial actions and improvements which policy-makers, agencies, and governments are starting to take in order to address shortcomings in social security systems’ support for employment, it is to the labour side of the interface to which policy and lawmakers must continue to look in order to rebuild and maintain citizens’ welfare. If this approach proves successful - aided by a new generation of regulatory interventions and reconstructed redistributive mechanisms - social security systems, instead of having to provide expensive (and increasingly problematic) subsidies for the wage-work-welfare transaction, should be able to revert to the traditional remit of social security and social protection. This is to concentrate scare public resources on those unable to participate, or participate fully, in the labour market. Whilst effective social security systems will still be necessary, and at all stages in the employment cycle - including welfare-to-work transitions, and after employment has ended - the central argument is that an effective wages and conditions floor, and sectoral floors, should generally be the centrepiece of any effective national social protection system. Consistent with that approach, wages and occupational benefits paid at a fair level, coupled with measures to close gender and equalities gaps and otherwise maintain ILO Decent Work standards, should be the cornerstone of work-related welfare. This is consistent with what ILO reports since the Bachelet Report in 2011 on the construction of social protection floors envisage. The article goes on to consider positive developments in a number of countries including Singapore’s CPF Pension Scheme, China’s social insurance programmes and health coverage, South Africa’s approach to social assistance and the social wage packet - delivered within an impressive constitutional law framework - and Brazil’s Bolsa Familia.
Follow-Up Articles. These develop the paper’s theme of the limitations of State in-work support, employers’ responsibilities for promoting in-work progression, and the need to re-build labour market redistributive mechanisms in low-pay sectors: From Mini to Maxi Job? In-Work Progression and the Evolving Duty to Work (ILJ, March/April 2017); and From Work to More (Better?) Work - Evaluating Work Progression (ILJ, March/April 2018).

Item Type: Book Chapter, Section or Conference Proceeding
Additional Information: Accepted manuscript of article in BCLR 2016 Vol 92, published 22 April 2016: based on paper given 17 September 2015 at XX1st World Congress of Labour & Social Security Law, International Convention Centre, Capetown, South Africa (15-18 September 2015) L
Faculty: Previous Faculty of Business, Education and Law > Law
Depositing User: Keith PUTTICK
Date Deposited: 03 Jan 2017 11:57
Last Modified: 24 Feb 2023 13:46

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