Caritas Europa calls for guaranteed minimum income 'to ensure dignity for all'

Caritas Europa calls for guaranteed minimum income “to ensure dignity for all”

(Source: Caritas Europa)

Caritas Europa believes that minimum income schemes are indispensable to achieve poverty eradication in Europe as stated in the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

At the EU level, the necessity of adequate minimum income schemes is also manifested in the European Pillar of Social Rights and at Council of Europe level in the European Social Charter.

Based on that and ahead of the upcoming German EU Council presidency (July-December 2020) that is expected to present a proposal for a minimum income framework, Caritas Europa presents this position paper. The 10 principles described in this paper are meant to contribute to the German presidency initiative and to help get the all Member States on board.

Caritas defines minimum income schemes as benefits and services that together constitute a safety net for people who, whether in or out of employment, have insufficient financial resources to ensure a minimum standard of living for themselves, including any dependents.

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Minimum income schemes are a last resort intended to ensure a dignified life for all.

The Caritas CARES! European and Country reports 2019 show that not all European countries have a minimum income provision and that some of the existing ones are inadequate. It is crucial to improve this situation.

In this position paper, we propose that European standards for minimum income systems should be flexible in order to achieve upward social convergence, meaning that while some provisions in such a framework must be binding from the beginning and be addressed to all EU Member States, other provisions may only apply to individual Member States.

We also recommend it should be legally binding and implemented as an EU directive to ensure its implementations.

Full text of the Caritas Europa position paper on minimum income:

More on Novena on the minimum income debate:

“Betrayal of the gospel”: Spanish Catholics slam Bishops’ opposition to minimum subsistence income

Spanish Bishops sabotage government plan for minimum living wage

Prophetic: Pope rages against “economic power”, “idolatry” of money; proposes universal basic wage

Cardinal clarifies Pope’s ‘universal basic wage’ not ‘universal basic income’

Madrid auxiliary bishop backs Pope’s call for universal basic wage, says workers “cornerstone” for Church exit from coronavirus

Austrian Catholics argue from Church teaching for Unconditional Basic Income during coronavirus, beyond

“Time to support the people”: 127,000 Europeans ask Brussels for urgent coronavirus relief in form of Unconditional Basic Income

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Mada Jurado

Reporter and community manager at Novena
Progressive Catholic journalist, author and educator. Working on social justice, equality and Church renewal.
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