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Social protection

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National social security systems, whose aim is to provide social protection, are under growing strains due to globalisation, increased pressure on some EU Member States to lower social standards, demographic trends and the effects of the current crisis. The structure and instruments of these systems vary among the Member States, but the EU can create common indicators and targets, for instance reducing the number of people without access to basic needs such as food, shelter and health protection.

The PES promotes needs-based social welfare benefits for all those who are retired, unemployed or unable to work in all European countries, to guarantee a life of dignity. We need national social, health and education policy standards in order to contribute to the fight against poverty and inequalities as well as the social and economic development of the EU. In light of our ageing population, the PES proposes setting EU targets for providing care for the elderly, modelled on those already in place for child care.

Minimum income support is an important social protection instrument in most Member States that keeps people from sliding into poverty. In order to guarantee this protection to all EU citizens and help authorities apply it the most efficiently, we should consider introducing a Framework Directive on Adequate Minimum Income Schemes at EU level. This framework directive should include an agreement on a common EU definition of adequacy and regular adaptations of income rates to cost increases.


What we are fighting for
Read the PES Common Manifesto for the European Elections 2014

Our Campaigns


In some countries as many as one young person out of two cannot find a job. We are calling for a European Youth Guarantee as a way to tackle youth unemployment.



Campaign info

5.7 million young people are currently unemployed in Europe and an additional 1.5 million are forced into precarious jobs. In some countries as many as one young person out of two cannot find a job.

The campaign “Your future is my future – a European Youth Guarantee now” is calling for a European Youth Guarantee as a way to tackle youth unemployment.

Campaign Material

  • Toolkit (EN)
  • PES guide on youth guarantee (EN)
  • PES appeal for a European Youth Guarantee (EN), (FR)
  • PES report: Combating Youth Unemployment (EN), (FR), (ES)
  • Factsheet on Youth Unemployment among Women (EN)
  • Campaign flyer (EN), (FR), (DE), (ES), (NL), (PT), (HU)

Campaign Video

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