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Thematic reports

A/HRC/50/38: Non-take-up of rights in the context of social protection - Report of the Special Rapporteur on extreme poverty and human rights


19 April 2022

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Extreme poverty


Social protection is an investment that societies make to enhance resilience against shocks, create an inclusive economy and achieve multiplier effects for the realization of human rights. Despite its potential, however, social protection benefits often go unused even though they are designed to protect individuals throughout their lives, a phenomenon known as “non-take-up”. The phenomenon of non-take-up affects millions around the world. It results in a waste of public resources and it significantly undermines the effectiveness of social protection in reducing poverty and inequalities. Non-take-up and its intolerable consequences can and must be addressed.

The Special Rapporteur urges all States to address non-take-up as an urgent policy priority. Reducing non-take-up is within reach: it requires recasting social protection as a human right rather than charity, coordinating actions to provide targeted information about social protection measures, simplifying application procedures and involving those who experience poverty in the design, monitoring and evaluation of social protection schemes.

Issued By:

Special Rapporteur on extreme poverty and human rights

Delivered To:

the Human Rights Council at its 50th session