ESPN synthesis report: Access to essential services for people on low incomes in Europe

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The synthesis report from the European Social Policy Network (ESPN) analyses the measures, policy frameworks and reforms that countries have put in place to help people on low incomes to access essential services. It covers the 27 EU Member States and 8 other European countries, and will inform the EU action plan to implement the principles of the European Pillar of Social Rights.

Principle 20 of the European Pillar of Social Rights (EPSR) reaffirms the right to access essential services and highlights the importance of ensuring good-quality service provision and adequate support for those in need. As a specific illustration, it lists six such services: water, sanitation, energy, transport, financial services and digital communications.

While there is evidence that countries are developing national and subnational actions to ensure that citizens have access to these six essential services, the synthesis report demonstrates that more needs to be done at national and EU level to guarantee accessible, available and affordable good-quality services to all.

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