The European Social Charter
- Article 12 requires contracting parties to establish or maintain a system of social security at a satisfactory level at least equal to that required for ratification of the Social Security (Minimum Standards) Convention, 1952 (No. 102). In addition, they must endeavour to raise progressively the system of social security to a higher level. This Article also contains provisions regarding the taking of steps by contracting parties to ensure equal treatment with their own nationals of the nationals of other contracting parties in respect of social security rights, as well as the granting, maintenance and resumption of social security rights.
- Article 13 of the Charter recognizes a right to social and medical assistance. Article 13(2) prohibits discrimination against persons who receive such assistance, and Article 13(3) provides for such advice and help as may be required to prevent, remove or alleviate personal or family want. Special provision is made for maternity benefits with a view to ensuring the effective exercise of the right of employed women to maternity protection (Article 8). Family benefits are provided for in Article 16. Social security rights are also protected in the revised European Social Charter which opened for signature on 3 May 1996.