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Social protection for informal sector key – women activists

UWONET officials brief the press on Women’s Day Friday

Kampala, Uganda | THE INDEPENDENT |  Women activists have noted that the informal sector which provides for 61% of the employment in Uganda has over the years been left unchecked by government especially in Social protection of the employees.

Women activists have therefore asked the government to balance the existing social protection systems to cater for the informal sector which has been neglected.

Some of the social protection schemes in place include retirement benefits, Labour market intervention, free medical care, Social Assistant Grants for Empowerment (SAGE), Universal Primary and Secondary Education, free medical care.

Addressing the media on Women’s Day Friday, Sarah Ogwang the Coordinator Women Empowerment at Uganda Women Network said that due to lack of social protection systems majority of women are victimized at workplaces and have no hope for the future.

The women activists now want government to adapt and balance the current social protection laws and policy to provide cover for the informal sector workers.

Barbara Nakamya a student of Makerere University and a member of the guild said that if the social protection systems are in place, it will reduce on the risks women in the informal sector face.

Social protection objectives are integrated into the four pillars of the Uganda Poverty Eradication Action Plan (PEAP) planning framework which include human development, enhancing production, competitiveness and incomes as well as security, conflict resolution and disaster management.

The social protection policy of 2015 was put together after 9 years of consultation. It was part of the commitments made at the intergovernmental conference on social protection held in Livingstone in March 2006.

According to the policy, Government recognizes that social protection is a critical pre-requisite for achieving national development goals.

Government recognizes the need to guarantee social security to the population and to provide assistance to people who are vulnerable either by age, social class, location, disability, gender, disaster or who do not earn any income in order to promote equity.

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