Solidarity as Foundation for Economic, Social and Cultural Rights

"Abstract The potential of the principle of solidarity as an interpretative guide for the realisation of ESCR has, to date, been largely overlooked. Solidarity mediates between the individual and the community, and it has a collective dimension in relation to both burden- and benefit sharing. The recognition of ESCR creates not only positive legal obligations on the state but also civic responsibilities on individuals to contribute, within their means, to the progressive realisation of ESCR. While the state is ultimately accountable for making progress on ESCR, taking these rights seriously will have implications for individual rights and responsibilities. We argue in this article that the principle of solidarity within society underpins ESCR as a whole and is essential for achieving sustainable progress on ESCR. This is because their progressive realisation requires not only that states' legal obligations are fulfilled but also that individual and collective contributions are made for the common good."