Increasing women’s economic empowerment is an important motivation for expanding access to digital financial services for women.
Countries worldwide are using social assistance payments as a component of their response to the COVID-19 pandemic. This briefing addresses how donors and their partners can design and implement social assistance payments that are efficient and secure while providing recipients with reliable, convenient, and safe access to their payments.
Many countries have launched unprecedented relief packages to cushion the economic and social impact of the COVID-19 pandemic. Lessons from the COVID-19-related scale-up of social assistance can be harnessed by developing countries to rethink and strengthen the architecture of social protection systems in the future.
For government-to-person payments to truly benefit the most vulnerable during COVID-19, they must tackle the inequalities that women are facing due to the pandemic.
Given pre-existing gender gaps, there are concerns about exclusion for many of the social assistance programs being rolled out around the world in response to COVID-19. Social protection systems that ignore gender inequality will likely fail to mitigate the risks of the pandemic for women, and, at worst, could further exacerbate inequalities. Therefore, inclusive economic policies that empower women and create resilience now and for the future must be designed to ensure women contribute to the global recovery. This paper offers guidance and considerations for policymakers to support women’s inclusion and empowerment.