Welfare Reform- Major Challenge for the Social Management in Romania

By Dumitrescu, Ioana Irina | Manager, January 1, 2013 | Go to article overview

Welfare Reform- Major Challenge for the Social Management in Romania


Dumitrescu, Ioana Irina, Manager


Mutual relations between the economic groth and social development are particu- larly complex. Development in the social sphere is strongly influenced by the charac- teristics and dynamics of economic environ- ment. Long-term economic development and social progress determine, support and stim- ulate each other. Nevertheless, the results of economic growth is not automatically trans- ferred to the social field, since a prosperous economy is a necessary but not a sufficient condition for individual and social welfare. It takes political will and vision to consistently lead a reform of the welfare distribution pro- cess so that the adopted decisions will allow not only reducing economic and social im- balances due to the transition period , bu also improving the quality of life for as many of citizens. Reaching this overall objective can be made only by a strong will of construction and development doubled by a performant social management.

Recent evolution of the socio-economic situation brings to reality the alarming social- human cost problems that the Romanian soci- ety will be confrunted with, wich are caused not only by the economy failure, but also by the lack of vision or organization refering to the social work system being permanently in a process of construction and and reforming. Since the relationship between social securi- ty and the national economy is determined by two types of factors having contradictory influences and evolutions, respectively in- crease of the social protection need due to deterioration of the economic situation and reducing spending and taxes with the view on the economic revigoration, the problem of financing social work comes back to reality accompanied by the numerous controversies generated by the the current economic, so- cial, political and moral crisis.

Solving this dilemma lies at the interfer- ence betwen the economic option and politi- cal decision and is significantly influenced by the quality of political leadership that must establish priorities and emergencies and identify new approaches in order to maintain the rithm of changes without compromising the social balance.

In this context we can ask the follow- ing questions: What are the reform direc- tions necessary to achieve effective social protection under the circumstances of the economic crisis and limited financial resourc- es? Increasing social protection expenditure can become a brake on economic develop- ment? How to reshape the social assistance system under the context of austerity, so that social protection can turn itself from a ten- sion factor in a growth stimulating factor?

Formulating a response to these chal- lenges has been the objective of social as- sistance reform outlined by the new law on social assistance.

Deeply contested by the academic world because of the proposed reform mea- sures and received with scepticism by the public, the Law no. 292/2011 brings impor- tant changes in the social work system vision and conception .

Further on we ' ll analyze and present some of the main modification.

The reform of the social work system in our country was started to meet the nation- al target assumed to decrease the number of individuals being in risk of poverty and social exclusion with 580,000 ( namely with about about 15%) up to 2020, related to year 2008. To achieve these results, it is necessary to implement administrative measures to al- low greater focus towards vulnerable groups alongside with a most efficient use of exist- ing resources.

To this end was adopted the new law of social work no.292/2011, as a keystone of the reform. Subsequently there were also worked out the comprehensive reform strategy in the social field and national reform plan for the year 2011-2013 as elements of the ample proj- ect of the modernization of social wellfare system of protection and assistance, financed by the loan agreement between Romania and International Bank for Reconstruction and Development1. …

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