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Critical obstacles to inclusive social development in Latin America and the Caribbean: Background for a regional agenda

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UN symbol.: LC/CDS.3/3 68 p. Editorial: ECLAC September 2019


The countries of Latin America and the Caribbean face the great challenge of implementing the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, seeking a new model of development based on equality, dual social and labour inclusion, eradication of poverty, environmental sustainability and economic growth. With this in mind, the member States of the Regional Conference on Social Development in Latin America and the Caribbean have undertaken to foster the construction of a regional agenda for inclusive social development.
This document identifies and describes the critical obstacles that contribute to the existence and persistence of equality gaps, which in turn hinder achievement of inclusive social development. The obstacles are: deeply rooted poverty and vulnerability to poverty in the region; structural, unjust and inefficient inequalities and the culture of privilege; gaps in human capacity development and in access to basic services; deficits in decent work and uncertainties linked to technological changes in the world of work; still partial and unequal access to social protection; a social institutional framework that is still under construction; and insufficient social investment. To these obstacles must be added a set of emerging challenges, including different forms of violence; disasters and climate change; demographic, epidemiological and nutritional transitions; migration; and technological changes.