A Call to Action: the Social Protection Floor Initiative

A woman and her child beg for money on the streets of Guatemala. (Photo: E.Thenhaus)

There are many rights afforded to all citizens of the world in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, including the right to social security, protection against unemployment, food, medical care and education. According to a report created by two UN agencies, the World Health Organization (WHO) and the International Labor Organization (ILO), “At present four out of five people world wide do not benefit from a level of social protection that allows them to realize these human rights”.

These organizations, along with members of civil society including the NGO Committee on Social Development, of which Loretto’s UN office is an active member, have joined together to advocate for the implementation of a Social Protection Floor. This initiative, comprised of a two-pronged approach to ensuring the realization of these human rights, demands the following:

  • “A basic set of essential social rights and transfers, in cash and kind, to provide a minimum income and livelihood security for all and to facilitate effective demand for and access to essential goods and services”
  • “The supply of an essential level of goods and social services such as health, water and sanitation, education, food, housing, life and asset-saving information that are accessible for all”

This video also demonstrates a couple of different examples of effective and affordable programs implemented at the national level that provide a basic level of social protection for all.

This is an important initiative that could affect millions of lives, and we need your help!

  •  The New York based NGO Committee for Social Development at the United Nations has mounted a signature campaign in 4 languages in support of the Social Protection Floor Initiative. We hope for 1 million signatures.The signatures will be used as an advocacy tool at national level and at the UN during the Commission on Social Development 2012, Commission on Status of Women 2012 and the ILO event in June 2012.
  • The Loretto UN office is launching a campaign mobilizing our sisters, co-members, students, alumnae, partners, networks and friends to sign the petition for the Social Protection Floor. Your names will be brought before the United Nations along with hundreds of thousands of others in support of this initiative.
  • What’s more, we want to be able to track how many signatures our tiny, but mighty community can organize. Therefore, we are also asking you to Put Loretto on the map! On the petition website, a map has been created to show the locations of all of those who sign on.  If you are a member or friend of the Loretto Community,  sign the online petition and put “Loretto, Kentucky” as your location.  By doing so, we will be able see the Loretto Community’s impact on this important issue.
  • If you are a member of one of our UN partner communities, put your motherhouse on the map too!  You as well can rally your congregations and networks by seeing how many of the Precious Blood Sisters of O’Fallon or BVMs from Dubuque, Iowa sign on to this initiative.
  • Most of all, Share it! Share it through your list serves and networks, your office or your neighbor. Join with us in demanding the realization of human rights for all. 

Sign the petition now!

Click below to sign the petition, or use the link to share with friends.
Resources about the Social Protection Floor
UN NGO Committee on Social Development — About the Social Protection Floor Campaign

www.socialfloor.org -Website of the Global Extension of Social Security organization that includes extensive information about the initiative, including brochures and reports.

ILO Social Protection Floor- Fact Sheet

VIDEO: Social Protection Floor: Short video by the ILO on the  social protection floor

VIDEO: Social Protection- A Lifelong Necessity – 13 minute film on successful social protection measures and the need for a social protection floor. Produced by French organization GIP SPSI.

Facebook Page: Sign the Social Protection Floor Initiative – A page started by the NGO Committee on Social Development that includes regular updates on the status of the petition.