Redefine poverty to fight it (2023)

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Human rights of precarious workers: The legal precariousness of domestic work

Virginia Mantouvalou

"This article examines the issue of 'legislative precariousness' of workers and its compatibility with human rights. Legislative precariousness is defined as the particular vulnerability created by the explicit exclusion or reduced level of protection of certain categories of workers from the protective legislation.A group frequently violated by the law in many jurisdictions are domestic workers, whose situation is examined in the second part of the article.The overlapping of numerous expressions of legislative precariousness by this category of workers puts them at a disadvantage compared to other workers and also makes them difficult to enforce Domestic workers' weak legislation therefore places them in a particularly vulnerable position Considering the European human rights system as an effective and influential protection mechanism, the third part of the article examines the legal protection of the rights of domestic workers and the potential to help this group, but it is also clear that aspects of social rights create precariousness. The exclusion of undocumented immigrants is very worrying but can be corrected to a certain extent, as the European example shows. The fourth part of the paper considers how human rights practice in Europe sheds light on the interaction between human rights and labor rights in the context of migrant domestic work. As it turns out, human rights law challenges the traditional public/private divide and plays an important role in fighting precarious domestic worker legislation. Therefore, it is valuable to them. In addition, and more importantly, some additional conclusions can be drawn regarding the normative basis of the two sets of rules (human rights and labor rights). These include their common theoretical justification: dignity as non-commodification, liberty, and distributive justice. At the normative level, the final part of the article establishes that the human and labor rights of vulnerable workers have much in common and have the potential to address the statutory precariousness of domestic workers and other groups of workers in vulnerable situations”.

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Labor rights in the European Convention on Human Rights: an intellectual justification for an integrated interpretive approach

Virginia Mantouvalou

Labor rights have been neglected in human rights laws. Generally classified as social rights, they have been excluded from the main human rights conventions. Recently, the European Court of Human Rights developed a technique known as the "integrated interpretive approach" because it integrates social and labor rights into the European Convention on Human Rights. The first part of this article presents the case law and debates surrounding the introduction of this technology and also looks at the example of Canada, where similar developments are taking place. It finds controversy in the literature and uncertainty in judicial decision-making. The second part, therefore, develops a normative justification for the integrated approach to the interpretation of labor rights. It is based on freedom, a key value that underlies civil and political rights. However, negative representations of freedom are insufficient for the reasons explained in the article. Instead, he analyzes positive liberty in light of capability theory, leading to the breaking down of sharp divisions between sets of rights. A positive representation of freedom as a capability requires the protection of workers' rights under the European Convention on Human Rights and leads to the development of important principles of human rights at work.


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"Designed to reduce people... to the point of absolute necessity": human dignity in the active welfare state

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This article discusses the effects of the "activation turn" in the welfare state on the right to a dignified life (article 1 GRCh). The concept of 'dignity', which lacks a uniform definition, has been described as a better basis for 'judicial manipulation' than 'principled decision-making'. However, a standard of living considered compatible can be derived from the various references in international human rights treaties to a "decent" or "adequate" standard of living, to freedom from inhuman or degrading treatment, and to the right to private life. and family, as well as dignity itself. The 'activation turn' (here the focus is the UK, the phenomenon is international) is characterized by the requirement that social security recipients be available for paid employment and have compulsory job-finding activities. Penalties may be imposed for non-compliance, for a maximum of three years of lost performance. To date, the most significant challenge to conditionality in the UK has resulted in the rejection of a claim that the right not to be subjected to forced labor has been breached. This paper argues that while the activation of claimants is compatible with human rights instruments, the UK sanctions regime may be vulnerable to challenge. The main question is whether a regime supposedly aimed at “total impoverishment” is compatible with human dignity. While socio-economic legal instruments are discussed, given their non-incorporation into UK law, the focus is on ECHR Articles 3, 8 and P1-1 and their relationship to three elements of human dignity protection identified by McCrudden: prohibition of inhuman and degrading treatment, individual autonomy and the satisfaction of essential needs. In each case, it is recognized that the right to dignity can potentially be violated, either in individual cases or in the general operation of politics.


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Living with dignity in the 21st century. Poverty and inequality in human rights societies: the paradox of democracy / A dignified life in the 21st century. Poverty and inequality in human rights societies: The paradox of democracies

2013 •

Laurent Bonelli

At the beginning of the 21st century, poverty, impoverishment and inequalities are increasing throughout the European continent. These phenomena not only weaken the social cohesion of European societies, but also violate human rights, including social, civil and political rights, and call into question the functioning of democracy. How can people living in poverty make their voices heard in polarized societies where more than 40% of wealth and 25% of income are held by 10% of the population? This guide is the result of a two-year collective discussion within the framework of the Human Rights of People in Poverty project. The guide not only offers a critique of the current situation, analyzing inequality and poverty through the prism of human rights, democracy and redistributive policies, but also invites the reader to explore the possibilities of a renewed anti-poverty strategy. reduce Overcoming the stigma and categorization of people, opening learning paths to build well-being through sharing, avoiding waste and raising awareness among citizens about the principle of human dignity as a human right for all.


The Agreement as a missed opportunity for socio-economic rights in Northern Ireland: implications of full implementation for social security reform

2014 •

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marcus simpson

The UK Government makes three key human rights commitments in the Good Friday Agreement, which forms the basis for restoring devolution and moving Northern Ireland from conflict to peace: incorporating the European Convention on Human Rights into the Northern Ireland legislation, review proposals for a regional Bill of Rights and ensure compliance with the international obligations of the State in the province. While decentralized institutions are required by constitutional law to comply with the European Convention on Human Rights, prospects for the adoption of a Bill of Rights appear dim, and enforcement of other international obligations is not satisfactorily placed in political hands rather than judicial. Consequently, the protection of socioeconomic rights beyond those covered by the ECHR is weak. This paper argues that judicial protection of socio-economic rights, whether in the form of a Bill of Rights or the incorporation of additional human rights treaties into Northern Ireland law, is necessary for the full implementation of the agreement. It then considers the impact of such a move on social security in the region, given Northern Ireland's unique legislative competence in this area, tempered by long-established convention (the parity principle) that policy should reflect the developments in the UK. Recent UK government reforms have sparked considerable hostility in all three devolved regions, putting parity under unprecedented political pressure. From a legal perspective, it suggests that a key element of the reform package, the penalty regime for applicants failing to meet conditions, is already difficult to reconcile with Northern Ireland's obligations under the ECHR. Equating the socio-economic instruments with the ECHR would call into question the power of the Assembly to continue to defend other aspects of the Westminster model, in particular benefit levels. The final section highlights the profound political and fiscal implications that should be considered.


Austerity and European Social Rights: How can the courts protect Europe's lost generation?

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Social rights in times of crisis in the eurozone: the role of fundamental rights Challenges

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