The Challenge for Labour Law in Europe
Edited by Jeff Kenner, Izabela Florczak and Marta Otto
Chapter 3: Precarious work and social protection: between flexicurity and social pollution
The chapter explores the possibility of changing the way in which any social and legal system guarantees social protections for the weakest workers. To do so it elaborates a unique functional set for classifying all kind of precariat, which it names the 'un[der]-protected workers'. The issue of the precariat is held as an imbalance in the flexicurity balance, considered akin to pollution in the social environment: so-called social pollution. The proposed method to counterbalance the lack of security/protection and rebalance flexicurity is a '(non-wage) Social Security (virtual or) Fake (Pigouvian) Tax' (the SSFT). The idea is that this device either forces companies to hire through SERs (which include the protection of decent work) or, where workers were hired through a non-SER (that is lacking, or failing, standards of decent work), forces them to pay to finance a system which guarantees some protections to precarious workers.
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