We are posting here 12 questions that were not answered by the panellists during the Webinar on "How can social protection systems respond to the COVID-19 crisis?" so that we can start a discussion around them.
Question 1: Hello, could you please pass us the link for the interagency tool used for one of the slides. Also, could you please specify why you have classified it as a covariate shock only when there is also an external shock of the stoppage of economic activities and societal social distancing. Is this not idiosyncratic as well? From Ruby Khan
Fabio’s Reply: Dear Ruby, here is the link to ISPA’s CODI – Core Diagnostic Instrument - : https://ispatools.org/core-diagnostic-instrument/ , you can click in Data Collection Framewok and when the excel file opens look for the tab: Program Inventory Table. As for the second part of your question, covariate shocks are those shocks affect large number of people with a community, region at the same time such as closure of big factory; floods; droughts; a recession. Idiosyncratic shocks are those that affect just one person (or a few) at time.
Question 2: How do you think in case of Bangladesh can overcome these shocks through SP where the country is heavily dependent on its remittance - 1. through garments industry and 2. labor market? From Fatema Khyrunnahar
Question 3: Many labour migrants sending countries (like Kyrgyzstan, where I am) are suffering from a decrease of remittances and increased need for social protection. How can we address social protection issue of labour migrants who lost their jobs and would be unemployed? And what measures should the government take to compensate for the reduced remittances? Thank you. From Hyo Jeong Jung
Question 4: I see that adaptive livelihood initiatives are placed in the medium term. However, livelihoods and weather on which livelihoods depend cannot wait for the crises otherwise farmers dealing in perishable commodities are likely to suffer. Failure to harvest at the right time regardless of COVID 19 may result in post-harvest losses. How should we balance these livelihood challenges in the midst of COVID19 with social protection especially those that demand immediate responses? From Moses Chibole
Question 5: Could you give more examples (in addition to Brazil and Thailand) of the implementation of new platforms to register non-beneficiaries of programs? What should these platforms have to be effective? What are the common mistakes when implementing this type of platforms for new registrations? From Karla Macias
Fabio's reply: Argentina, Costa Rica and Peru have also set up online platform to apply for emergency benefits. These platforms need to register the information provided by the applicant and cross-check it with other databases to check/assess the eligibility status of the applicant and transfer this information to the payment system. It is too easy to assess what has been the most common errors of these systems, but they do run the risk of excluding those who do not have easy access to internet or do not know how to handle online platforms. Civil society organization and grassroots movement have a key role in supporting those who are at risk of being excluded to apply. Government also needs to communicate clear what are the necessary steps and things of alternative ways of registration to make sure these groups are not excluded.
Question 6: Dear Michael: Concerning access to health care in the short-term, e.g. based on waiving fees, what recommendations do you have for LICS and acute crisis-affected countries with already high rates of undernutrition (stunting/waisting), with weak SP and other systems, low budget, dependent on international resources, where insufficient resources to offer universal access to health care system. Risk of out-crowding of resources in favour of direct public health interventions related to C-19 pandemic. In if to focus on a priority category: who to focus on? On elderly, rather than on under-fives/ PBW? Have there been projections done concerning the risk of raise of undernutrition as indirect effect of crisis (e.g. like during Ebola)? What concrete recommendations in such an environment, for both humanitarians and gov’t/ donors? From Sigrid Kühlke
Question 7: What about potential disruptions in food supply systems? What can SP offer to prevent or mitigate these? And what implications would this have in terms of urban vs rural focus of SP interventions? From Alejandro Grinspun
Question 8: Have there been any examples of urban population targeting? Rural areas is an area that WFP has definitely perfected - but would benefit from social protection programmes that target urban population who are likely to be disproportionately affected. From Wanja Kaaria
Question 9: All speakers presented options to better respond to COVID-19 that are state-centered, centrally produced and top-down. I think we need to change the framework. How can we better link informal and formal social protection systems for a response that is indeed more democratic, context-based and sustainable? From Matteo Caravani
Question 10 (via Twitter): A question to @ValentinaBarca on the challenge of mass enrolment to emergency benefits as part os #SPresponses to #COVID19: should countries consider auto-enrolment options? In contexts where a comprehensive social registry is not in place, is commonly easier to identify those who are not poor (for ex. trough income tax registries) rather than finding the poor. Do you see it as a feasible solution for horizontal expansion? from Anna Carolina Machado
Question 11: In a context of crisis, where it is hard to make sp programmes available and accessible, how do we ensure programme design and benefit delivery is gender-sensitive? From Patricia Velloso
Question 12: A lot of countries are relying on statutory social security schemes to provide relief to informal workers (daily wagers, etc.). This may be a temporary fix but it’s not sustainable and in essence, you are exhausting contributions of insured persons on people who have not made any contributions. What are your thoughts about this? From Rabia Razzaque