Central and Eastern Europe


  • Date: 6/10/2014

Engaging the unemployed in the workforce – Poland pilots a Welfare to Work program 

Across Europe and large parts of the world, many countries are now dealing with unusually high unemployment. Citizens have become impoverished and social tensions have risen which, in turn, has placed greater strain on both the existing social benefits system and future pension schemes. A growing number of countries, including Poland, are therefore looking for improved approaches to engaging their unemployed.
For the Government of Poland, the historically high level of long-term unemployment was becoming an economic challenge. More than 50 percent of the country’s unemployed were considered to be ‘long-term unemployed’, and these high levels of inactivity were effectively siphoning off at least one percent of Polish GDP annually. Three specific challenges were creating barriers for properly engaging the unemployed in Poland.