EAPN has given the minister a personal recognition, for her promotion of the National Strategy for the Prevention and Fight against Poverty and Social Exclusion and her involvement in promoting the participation of people with experience in poverty.

The minister has highlighted the welfare state model. "In general, the system has proven to be able to protect citizens against poverty, as well as reduce the social gap," he said. "According to a recent study, our system is capable of reducing poverty by almost 52% and inequality by 34%," he said.

However, Carcedo has acknowledged that there are points of improvement: "Politicians can never be complacent with what we have." Therefore, he stressed that one of the emerging social phenomena that has the greatest impact on the well-being of the population is that of the progressive precariousness of working conditions. "Today we have 13% of poor workers since their jobs are precarious and approximately 50% of temporary workers in Spain are between 15 and 24 years old," he explained.

The minister has insisted that, along with that of young people, another serious gap that presents the welfare state is the protection of children. "Our welfare model is especially clumsy when it comes to reducing child poverty: it only does so by 23%, while other countries manage to do so by up to 60%."

As he explained, "investment in families and children is still scarce." The minister has set as an example that France, the country with the highest fertility rate in Europe, dedicates 3% of its GDP to family and children, while Spain barely exceeds 1%.

Carcedo has also pointed out as new social risks structural unemployment, the narrowing of the population pyramid, as well as the systemic lack of protection of certain groups, including the migrant population "that contributes so much to society."

"Our social welfare model is not prepared to respond to these new social risks and we must continue advancing in its reform as we have done this legislature," he insisted.

The minister has claimed as a priority to reduce the rates of poverty and exclusion of the most vulnerable groups, "as the objectives of the 2030 Agenda demand."

Carcedo stressed that work has already begun on the Minimum Vital Income, by improving the benefits for dependent children recently approved by the Government. He has also claimed the increase in the Minimum Interprofessional Salary and the Decent Employment Plan.

Finally, Carcedo has insisted on the need to reform the social protection system to improve the lives of young people and children. "We must do it for reasons of social justice and because we cannot waste the talent of the youngest. For this we cannot do without the necessary doses of social and political commitment."

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