This report presents the main findings and general recommendations of the 2016 SOLIDAR Social Progress Watch Initiative regarding the ‘modernisation’ of social protection systems and access to services in the EU. It is based on extensive consultations with SOLIDAR members and partners, and is the first in a two-part series, the second of which will be dedicated to the integration of third country nationals.
The objective of the recommendations is to close the gaps in the current proposal for the European Pillar of Social Rights, in order to ensure upward social convergence in the EU as enshrined in Article 9 TFEU and in the international commitments of Member States in the field of social protection. The report concludes that national social protection systems do not ensure decent living standards. Access to high quality social services is not guaranteed for all and is particularly limited for vulnerable people. SOLIDAR therefore calls for a rights-based approach that enforces uniform, high-level social standards accessible to everyone.