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Child Protection and Social Protection “Social Protection must be regarded as one element in a broad strategy aimed at ensuring protection of children” 5 June 2015
Background: Why Child Protection and Social Protection? • Vulnerability to violence, exploitation, abuse and neglect are critical aspects of children’s experience of poverty, but receive little attention in social protection debates and policy frameworks. §Child protection services/programs are not well connected to wider social protection agenda. Child protection components are not well integrated into Social Protection strategies or systems §Synergies between social welfare services for children and social/cash transfer programs need to be explored/expanded to ensure the best outcome for 2 children in poverty.
How Social Protection can Support Children at Risk Social/economic factors put children at risk: family loss, migration, displacement/ separation during natural disaster/armed conflict, child labour, commercial sexual exploitation, trafficking These issues can be addressed within a comprehensive Social Protection Agenda Social Protection can strengthen Child Protection Systems including: Limited number 3 and capacity of social welfare workforce
Critical Links: Child Protection and Social Protection Where child protection systems are not functioning or individuals/families are reluctant or unable to access services, a limited demand challenges the implementation of social protection and poverty reduction schemes. Synergies and complementarity: recognizing where strengthened child protection can better support effective social protection program and vice versa, is critical to achieving the best results for children. functioning or individuals/families are 4
Potential Entry Points: Towards a Child-Sensitive approach to Social Protection 1. Cash transfers - conditional on CP indicators? §Birth registration, Good Parenting/FDS Sessions 2. Social worker dialogue with cash transfer beneficiaries: child rights and protection issues, i. e. “no child labor”, explain risks of trafficking/exploitation 3. Link cash transfer beneficiaries to other programs, Including social welfare services, 4. Strengthen implementation of children’s legislation Challenge: Child protection-related conditions are difficult to monitor, conditionality rarely enforced; 5 focus remains on advocacy
Case Study from Vietnam: Social protection reform as equity instrument Policy reform of the social assistance system § Support Opportunity Program of Social Assistance System § Consolidates policies for poor households with children § Breaks poverty cycle, promotes access to social services §Revision of social assistance policies for most vulnerable §Child support grant, access to education for children with disabilities, orphans, abandoned, single parent families, Strengthen social care services § Develop social work profession, strengthen legal framework, § SW positions provide statutory child protection services § Strengthen national/local CP systems: coordinated CP services, alternative care, birth registration for marginalized children § CP and Social Policy support for child protection budgeting 6
Social protection reform as equity instrument Reforming social assistance schemes for children §Social Policy and Child Protection: expanding social assistance schemes for children into consolidated policy instruments §universal child benefit and targeted schemes for vulnerable children §redefinition of vulnerabilities, inclusive definitions of child disabilities §Monitoring and documentation of lessons learned on consolidation schemes for poor families with children. § Impacts on behavioral changes in accessing to 7 services
Child Protection and CCT’s in Peru Recommendation: CCTs need to consider children within the context of relationships within families and wider community/society to focus on households within community-level actions CCTs should build better links between child protection and broader social protection measures. The study demonstrates that CCTs can play a greater role in child protection, noting that: “Investing in child protection under the umbrella of social protection could be one of the most efficient and sustainable strategies to tackle poverty”. 8
Child Protection within Social Protection Systems: Transforming Children’s Lives • Social Protection can strengthen child protection through greater support to families, specifically by targeting children at risk, as an integral component of effective social protection • A Child sensitive focus should not be limited to health or education but should pay attention to protecting children from violence • Current social protection programs do not reach many children with needs, including those without parental care, or facing discrimination 9 and social exclusion. (SCF 2011)
Suggestions for Way Forward • Work with communities/public to build partnerships, agreement/understanding on social protection and child protection • Influence stakeholders to support model of social protection that fully integrates CP into policy and program • Develop CP indicators to be included in Social Protection Monitoring 10
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