This study analyzes the enactment process of the National Basic Livelihood Security Act. Such an analysis can help formulate a clear understanding of the institution, and therefore assist in the establishment of improvement measures for this and other social welfare policies. It can also offer implications for a number of programs and systems currently being discussed for possible introduction, as well as for existing ones that need to be upgraded.
During the Asian financial crisis of 1997, the Korean government requested an IMF bailout and Korea suffered an economic meltdown. The sudden economic disorder significantly reduced income and employment opportunities, increased unemployment, and aggravated poverty and inequality. Insufficient social security systems made it more likely for jobless individuals who were not covered by employment insurance to become poor. Public discussions ensued and public appeal was made for the enactment of the National Basic Livelihood Security Act, which was finally introduced in October 2000. However, issues were raised concerning the selection criteria for beneficiaries, property calculation methods for the near-poverty group, and persons obliged to support beneficiaries. There were also arguments for repealing or scaling back the scope of benefits of the Act, which provides a minimum livelihood allowance for beneficiaries.
The government reviewed alternatives in different stages of the enactment, and after President Kim Dae-jung declared a strong endorsement for the Act in June 1999, the national sentiment resulted in the eventual propagation of the act. However, during policy implementation, some issues were raised concerning the appropriateness of the minimum livelihood allowance, property criteria, and selection criteria for the persons obliged to support beneficiaries, insufficient welfare administration infrastructure, limitations in identifying applicants’ income level, measures for ineligible individuals, criteria for livelihood and housing benefits, and efficacy of self-support programs.
The National Basic Livelihood Security Act is a major Korean public assistance system and is evaluated to have contributed to reducing poverty and protecting the livelihood of the underprivileged. As the social and economic structure evolves, relevant institutions should also be upgraded in a timely manner so that beneficiary selection criteria is adjusted, their income level is clearly identified, and illicit beneficiaries are rooted out. Then the efficacy of the Act will be significantly enhanced.
- 국민기초생활보장법 제정과정 분석(Analysis of the enactment process of the national basic livelihood security act)
- 강신욱; 허선; 정호원
국민기초생활보장법 제정과정 분석(Analysis of the enactment process of the national basic livelihood security act)
|Series Title; No||연구 / 2004-29|
|Subject Country||South Korea(Asia and Pacific)|
|Subject||Social Development < Social Welfare
Government and Law < Laws and Legislation