A Study On The Social Security Social Policy Essay

Social security defined as ‘ … the protection which society provides for its members through a series of public steps against the economic and societal hurt that otherwise would be caused by the arrest or significant decrease of net incomes ensuing from illness, pregnancy, employment hurt, invalidness and decease ‘ ( ILO 1984:3 ) , is perennial and omnipresent as human society. It plays a important function in the lives of many people particularly those with minimum incomes. As noted by Hill ( 2006 ) it is ‘collective action to protect persons against income lacks ‘ Social security system hence, ‘is made up of one or more societal security programmes, a method of funding, and a manner of disposal, that can be configured to accomplish peculiar societal security aims ‘ ( Dixon 1999:10 ) . This does non, nevertheless, needfully connote uniformity of societal security systems globally.

This paper hence seeks to analyze the distinct societal security systems that exist in different states and as such bring to bear the beginnings of their difference. It would be argued that the differentiation among states is as a consequence of the diverse histories of societal security proviso every bit good as the different public assistance regimes that take topographic point in the assorted states. The paper will further research the diverseness in relation to selective or cosmopolitan societal security systems in footings of societal insurance, societal aid and societal allowance/contingent benefits and pull on illustrations from UK, USA, Sweden, and Germany to confirm the treatment.

Social security is per se aimed at poorness bar or relief, compensation every bit good as redistribution of income. This map can be delivered through non systemic societal security such as the household, voluntary organisations ( charity, friendly societies, recognition brotherhoods and trade brotherhoods ) every bit good as market. The province nevertheless, plays a really important function of societal security proviso in many states.

Notwithstanding the permeant nature of societal security, there is diverseness in the systems of operation globally and this is as a consequence of the ideological underpinnings of different states. In other words, the societal security purveying in states depend on the political political orientations and public assistance governments that exist and this to a big extent form the system of societal security. Dixon ( 1999:1 ) captures this as he writes the right of societal security is ‘realized in changing grades in different states, as determined by their traditions, history, degree of socioeconomic development and the prevalent political and societal doctrines, which come together and find who should be the societal security victors or also-rans ‘ . Thus, eligibility for societal security benefits is one signifier of differentiation that exists in different states. This has to make with the conditions or prescriptions to be satisfied in order to have a peculiar societal security benefit. Either by manner of selective means-test or cosmopolitan citizenship benefits every bit good as contributory or non conducive revenue enhancement financed benefits.

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Selective societal security is where merely peculiar persons or groups are covered by a societal security programme and this is normally based on means-test topic to household income and resources. The major map of selective societal security is poverty relief and this is achieved through societal aid programmes. Social aid is a selective means-tested societal security system in which resources are targeted at those most in demand. In the words of Dixon ( 1999:5 ) , it is a ‘selective-categorical attack to societal security ‘ . This system unlike societal insurance does non trust on personal part but is funded through public grosss ( revenue enhancements and budgets ) . Eligibility is based on citizenship every bit good as residence and donees need to fulfill certain conditions like low income to measure up for allowances, grants and other supports to supplement their incomes. This could be provided in hard currency as in the Transitional Assistance for Needy Families ( TANF ) in USA, revenue enhancement credits in UK or in sort ‘food casts programme available to low income persons and households in the USA ‘ ( Walker2005:6 ) .

Universal societal security on the other manus is a societal security programme that gives coverage to the full population whether citizens or occupants and is a non contributory system. This societal allowance plan provides benefits to all legal occupants ( Bradshaw & A ; Deacon 1983 ) or citizens and funding is by and large through public grosss. The indispensable map of this system is the bar of poorness. Dixon ( 1999:8 ) describes this as a ‘universal-categorical attack to societal security, whereby normally flat-rate and unvarying hard currency pensions and benefits are provided to occupants ( normally subject to minimal residence period demand ) or citizens in designated classs of presumed demand, normally without mention to their current or past employment experience ‘ . He farther goes on to state societal allowance recognizes ‘common duty of all people for the public assistance of others ‘ ( Dixon 1999:64 ) .

States with such cosmopolitan societal security plans in footings of societal allowance include UK, Sweden, New Zealand, Denmark etc. In the UK and Sweden, kid allowances are major cosmopolitan societal security systems. In add-on, Sweden has a basic universal non contributory citizens ‘ pension. Other cosmopolitan societal security systems include New Zealand old age allowance and Denmark ‘s cosmopolitan pension for old age or disablement ( OECD 1996 ) . Furthermore, citizenship based benefits is another signifier of cosmopolitan societal security in which a universal basic income is provided to citizens. Engagement tested cosmopolitan systems besides provide cosmopolitan benefits based on modified societal insurance.


Furthermore, societal insurance is yet a scheme of societal security and this is net incomes related every bit good as contributory. In the footings of Dixon ( 1999:4 ) societal insurance is ‘an employment-related, conducive attack to societal security ‘ . This is a selective societal security system in which entitlements are based on anterior parts and either financed from current part gross or past part income accrued. In add-on, part is compulsory and may be based on level rates or net incomes related and its primary societal security end is to forestall poorness. The societal insurance scheme is fundamentally a major societal security system globally for most pension strategies and as noted by Dixon ( 1999 ) , approximately 148 states have adopted it at least for one of their societal security programmes.

In add-on to the differences in societal security schemes outlined supra, another beginning of difference in societal security systems is attributable to the different types of public assistance governments. Welfare regimes harmonizing to Walker ( 2005:13 ) ‘refer to the different ways in which states – or legal powers – form economic production and transportations within the context of a capitalist market economic system ‘ . Based on the type of government, societal security proviso could be shifted to the household, market or province. For case in a broad government, accent is on the markets and therefore the single relies on household and private insurance for societal security. In other words, corporate public assistance is provided through the market with residuary targeted province support for those who are unable to lend ( Walker 2005 ) . Countries within this class include USA and to some extent UK.

A socially democratic government emphasize on universalistic modified societal insurance with dominant function of the province. Social security is seen as a cosmopolitan right for citizens and as such cosmopolitan basic benefits. As noted by Walker ( 2005:16 ) , ‘ … reception of a public service or benefit becomes both a right and a badge of citizenship, a statement of equal worth and solidarity ‘ . The societal security is funded through public grosss ( revenue enhancement ) . For illustration Sweden and Denmark within this government have universal child allowance and basic cosmopolitan pensions severally.

On the other manus, in the conservative governments, societal security is provided through corporate transportations or societal insurance with small or no societal aid. ‘The function of the province is that of advancing the public assistance of its citizens through ordinance and, where appropriate, facilitation ‘ ( Walker 2005:16 ) . Pooling of hazard is a cardinal constituent of this societal security system. Emphasis is on the household and support is provided to the male breadwinner while the female housewife is dependent on her employed hubby ( Walker 2005 ) . In add-on compensatory rights for workers every bit good as net incomes related societal insurance and household allowance are other signifiers of support. This government is found in Germany, France and Japan.

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In the visible radiation of the foregoing treatment, the paper did convey to bear that societal security is really important for poorness relief and bar. This therefore explains its laterality globally but in different signifiers. The paper has discussed the difference in societal security systems in relation to coverage ( selective/universal ) and the different schemes used every bit good as the different societal security governments which besides shape the societal security systems of assorted states. Despite the diverseness in systems of societal security, it is possible to place major schemes through which these societal securities are constructed globally. This paper hence looked at three major schemes, societal aid, societal insurance and societal allowance/contingent benefits in relation to UK, USA, Sweden and Germany every bit good as the different societal security governments. In decision, it can be emphasized that though societal security systems differ in varied states, they all aim at poorness relief or bar, societal compensation, redistribution of income, furthering societal coherence as good bettering on the criterion of life of people.


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