UE/R: Advocacy workshop on decent work and social protection for Journalist held

By Akayeti Emmanuel || Contributor
Regional News UER: Advocacy workshop on decent work and social protection for Journalist held
JUN 3, 2023 LISTEN

There is an urgent need for advocacy to ensure that the issues of the poor and the vulnerable are main-streamed in the rolled-out of social protection schemes so as to ascertain the impact or otherwise of those schemes.

ActionAid Ghana, a Non-Governmental Organization working in support of basic needs and rights of the poor, with an emphasis on human rights, rights to land and education, under its Northern Ghana Integrated Project with sponsorship from the European Union has organized a two days advocacy training workshop for media practitioners drawn from the Upper East and North East Regions, to deepen their knowledge on decent work principles and the existing social protection schemes in Ghana.

In an interview with ModernGhana News in Bolgatanga, the Communication Manager of ActionAid Ghana Esther Ohenewaa Brown indicated that, through the implementation period, a lot of research was conducted and found out that, when it comes to decent work within the Agriculture value chain in which the project is situated, there are challenges regarding the smallholder farmers who are not adequately compensated for the work they do. She stated that there are some who do not have contracts with the agribusinesses that they work with, and no social security. She added that in case of any eventuality, they have nothing to depend on, and the majority of them are family heads with no safety net.

The Communication Manager, further reveals startling issues about the existing social protection schemes following a second research on the National Health Insurance Scheme (NHIS), the School Feeding Programme (SFP), the LEAP and some issues around access to finance for women businesses. It was revealed that it is not about access to these social protection schemes but mostly, it is politically connected who already have the means to take care of themselves are the ones that are accessing these funds.

Against this backdrop, she stressed that the advocacy training therefore seeks to look for ways and means to ensure that, the institutions that are mandated to deliver these public services do the targeting right, which the media are a crucial part in this regard.

Regarding whether some of the policies are serving the purpose for which they were formulated Ohenewaa Brown answered affirmatively saying for instance the LEAP is supposed to target the very poor in society who don’t work unfortunately most of these groups of people and their leaders when spoken to, don’t even know when these funds are released and how to access it. The implication is that there is a caucus that is accessing these social protection services rather than the vulnerable.

She urged the media to do a deeper assessment of the existing policies in order to know the true state of affairs and whether the services are really yielding the desired results.