Edited by James Midgley, Rebecca Surender and Laura Alfers
Chapter 7: Social and human rights
Social rights may be understood as articulations of human need; as the mutual claims that human beings make upon one another as members of a uniquely social species. In recent times, collectively guaranteed social rights have been recognized in economically developed countries as rights of welfare state citizenship. But they have also been recognized as a core component of an international framework of human rights. The idea that human development necessarily entails social as well as economic development has resulted in rights-based approaches to policies and provision for social protection and security on the one hand, and for human services, such as health care, education and housing, on the other. Rights-based approaches, however, can take different forms and may prioritize self-determination and individual freedom; the realization of agreed standards of social provision; or the identification and eradication of poverty as a violation of human rights. Social rights are dynamic social constructs, central to social policy and development.
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