Employment, Social Affairs & Inclusion

News 21/01/2019

Recent social policy developments in Cyprus, Ireland, Poland and the UK

Four new Flash Reports prepared by the European Social Policy Network (ESPN) are now available and provide information on recent social policy developments in Cyprus, Ireland, Poland and the UK.

  • Emerging from the 2013 crisis, Cyprus is now faced with one of the highest rates of Non-Performing Loans in Europe. In an attempt to protect the first residence of distressed borrowers and contribute to financial stability, the government has proposed the “Estia” scheme, as a solution based on social policy criteria. But is it quite so?
  • In a context of increasing pressure on public and private resources around long-term care and heavy reliance in the long-term care system on family carers, Ireland is undertaking a programme of training and supports for family carers, using funds from dormant accounts for this purpose.
  • In June 2019, a new occupational pension savings scheme will be introduced in Poland. The scheme will cover all workers and be based on an auto-enrolment mechanism with the possibility to opt-out. Contributions will be paid by employees and employers, with co-payment from the State budget. The government expects that this new scheme will improve the adequacy of the Polish pension system.
  • A new approach to measuring poverty has been proposed by The Social Metrics Commission. This may end a dispute between the UK Government and its critics which has been running since 2010. The approach may also be of interest to other EU countries and the European Commission.

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