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Reinvigorating the social contract and strengthening social cohesion: Social protection responses to COVID-19

Shahra Razavi, Christina Behrendt, Mira Bierbaum, Ian Orton, Lou Tessier (2020)

Key facts

Journal/Publisher
International social security review
Type of publication
Journal article
Elements of social cohesion
Participation
Equality/Inequality
Geographical focus
Theoretical
Main thematic areas
Social protection
Economic development

Summary

The COVID-19 pandemic has exposed the vulnerability of those who are inadequately covered by social protection in more and less developed countries alike, and has exacerbated the fragility of a social contract that was already under strain in many countries. A weak social contract in the context of an exceptional crisis poses a very real risk to social cohesion. Nevertheless, many States have reasserted themselves as the guarantor of rights by protecting public health and incomes. By sustaining these measures, economic recovery will be supported which will help minimize risks that may weaken social cohesion. However, this is a fast-moving, inherently unstable and protracted crisis. Social protection stands at a critical juncture. Decisive policy action will be required to strengthen social protection systems, including floors, as one of the cornerstones of a reinvigorated social contract.

Publication_2020_Shahra Razavi, Christina Behrendt, Mira Bierbaum, Ian Orton, Lou Tessier

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