One pressing omission to date is the complete absence from the discussion of the human rights implications and outcomes of social protection programmes. This is a significant analytical gap that must be filled. Considering the extensive human rights obligations which States possess by virtue of the multitude of international human rights treaties, and given that all UN agencies have committed to mainstreaming human rights throughout the UN system, the lack of a systematic discussion of social protection from a human rights perspective is problematic. States are subject to legally-binding domestic and international obligations to ensure that human rights guide the design, implementation, monitoring and evaluation of all public policies, and these obligations must be applied to social protection programmes.
Accordingly, for the past four years the United Nations Special Rapporteur on extreme poverty and human rights (the Special Rapporteur), Magdalena Sepúlveda, has focussed her work on developing the human rights framework for social protection.