Social Protection Department

The Social Protection Department provides ILO member States with tools and assistance to achieve and maintain the human right to social protection. Since its creation in 1919, the ILO has actively promoted policies and provided assistance to countries to supply adequate levels of social protection to all members of society guided by international social security standards adopted by its tripartite constituents, in particular its flagship Convention concerning Minimum standards of social security, 1952 (No. 102) and the Social Protection Floors Recommendation, 2012 (No. 202)


  1. ILO Live

    Development partners meeting of the Global Flagship Programme on building social protection floors for all

    24 March 2023 at 09:00 (Europe/Zurich)

  2. News

    ILO launches Massive Open Online Course "Making Universal Social Protection a Reality"

    26 January 2023

    This Massive Open Online Course enables learners to understand the key social protection concepts and the strengths and weaknesses of different approaches to social protection. It also provides participants with critical insights into policy options and social protection strategies in the context of decent work and general socio-economic development.

  3. Multilateralism

    ILO Director-General warns of threat to social justice at meeting with Chancellor Scholz and other international organization leaders

    30 November 2022

    Social justice, social protection and creating enough decent jobs were discussed during the Director-General’s visit to Berlin, which also resulted in new cooperation agreements with the World Bank and the German government.

  4. Annual Meetings of the World Bank and the IMF

    ILO Director-General calls for social protection and minimum wages to respond to cost-of-living crisis

    17 October 2022

    In statements to the World Bank and International Monetary Fund Annual Meetings, ILO calls for a crisis response that reduces inequalities and promotes sustainability, through universal social protection, adequate wage increases, greater support for vulnerable economies and respect for labour rights.

  5. New ILO report

    Making the right to social security a reality for domestic workers: A global review of policy trends, statistics and extension strategies

    16 June 2022

    GENEVA (ILO News) ‒ This ILO report provides data on social protection deficits experienced by domestic workers and identifies the barriers standing in the way of their effective social protection coverage.

  6. Joint ILO-UNICEF report

    The role of social protection in the elimination of child labour: Evidence review and policy implications

    18 May 2022

    This new ILO-UNICEF report provides a rigorous review of what the latest research says about the power of social protection to combat child labour. Providing families with direct assistance to help them weather crises can help reduce negative coping strategies like child labour and child marriage.

  7. New Publication

    UN collaboration on social protection: Reaching consensus on how to accelerate social protection systems-building

    05 May 2022

    The objective of this publication is to work towards a consensus among UN agencies on how best to support countries to achieve progress towards universal social protection in line with the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.

  8. Regional report

    Extending social health protection: Accelerating progress towards Universal Health Coverage in Asia and the Pacific

    07 November 2021

    This report documents and analyses country experiences and lessons on the extension of social health protection coverage in the Asia and the Pacific region. It provides a detailed account of progress made, challenges encountered and remaining coverage gaps, and explores their root causes.

  9. Guide for Policymakers and Practitioners

    Extending Social Protection to Migrant Workers, Refugees, and their Families

    8 November 2021

    Social security is a basic human right. Yet, 4.1 billion people worldwide have no access to social protection including healthcare. This new ILO global Guide provides an overview of policy options and country practices to extend social protection to migrant workers, refugees and their families.

  10. Flagship Programme

    ILO’s Global Flagship Programme on Building Social Protection Floors for All launches its second phase, extending support to 50 focus countries and aiming to improve the lives of 60 million people

    07 October 2021

  • Universal social protection is a human right and a State responsibility. As countries begin this pursuit of the Sustainable Development Goals, there is increased recognition that social protection is fundamental in reducing poverty and inequality, in improving human capital and productivity and in supporting growth and jobs. Social protection responds to many of the challenges that we face today.

    Guy Ryder,
    Director-General of the
    International Labour Organization