Essay about Media Myth P

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Pedro Hespanha Introduction Social policies are intervention instruments developed by the state to provide for the wellbeing and social protection of citizens and include actions to prevent social risk or to resolve existing social problems. In the case of the poor, social policies cover a wide range of problems and aim to respond in ways which ensure minimum standards of wellbeing. Although the range and effectiveness of these policies varies greatly from one society to another, in general the aim of meeting minimum social needs has failed to come up to expectations. In the case of Portugal possibly with the exception of basic education and the social insertion income scheme - it cannot be said, in all honesty, that minimum social entitlements exist. They do not exist in many areas such as housing, welfare, employment, transport. Health is a very problematic area in this respect since, despite the existence of a universal National Health Service, in most cases the poorest members of society do not benefit from prompt, quality care. Social policies targeted at the poorest members of society are implemented by the social services, characterised by benefits that are difficult to enforce and a low budget. Most of these services are run by voluntary non-profit organizations in exchange for agreed financial transfers. Some of these organizations, such as the Misericrdias, have a long history of helping the poorest members of society and are therefore able to exert considerable pressure on the state to delegate powers to combat poverty to them. Finally, measures designed to fight poverty are increasingly being developed through projects financed by European programmes or other external sources of funding. Unlike the current work of the bureaucratic social services, project-based actions are characterised by their experimental nature and the fact that they operate within a limited time and space and are normally managed by partnerships between public and private institutions. Within this organisational framework, it is important to analyse the relationship between professionals and the policies they implement, as well as the relationship between professionals and institutions with regard to the implementation of these policies. One initial observation that should be made prior to our analysis concerns the ambiguous status of social policies regarding their mission to reduce inequality. It is known that one of the main problems of social policies nowadays, and a source of great disillusionment, lies precisely in the fact that there is a huge gap between their stated principles (the rhetoric of solidarity and emancipation) and the practical implementation of measures (the placebo effect, regulation of the poor, workfare). Moreover, there is a feeling that reducing inequality and fighting poverty are minor concerns for the state and that society itself, through its elites and leaders, is not sufficiently committed to reinforcing these objectives and bringing pressure to bear on ending the causes of poverty. Nevertheless, changes have been introduced that are aimed at improving policies. Charges of inefficiency and the generation of dependency have led to the emergence of new forms of policies, either in combination with old policies or as a replacement for them. Essentially, the new generation of social policies favours social integration rather than subsidising risks and includes i. the active involvement of beneficiaries in planning and choosing programmes rather than their passive submission to actions decided by professionals ii. personalised rather than standard forms of assistance iii. joint responsibility on the part of the provider and the beneficiary for the implementation of programmes iv. decentralised planning of social programmes v. partnerships with local institutions for the management of decentralised programmes vi. an approach based on proximity rather than distant solicitude and vii. flexible rather than