Posted Oct 3, 2022, 8:31 AMUpdated on Oct 3, 2022 at 8:32 am
It is a sector with little known economic weight. A study, published on Monday, lifts the veil on the evolution of the French association sector. Rebound in the workforce after the health crisis, breakthrough in work-study programs and significant tax contribution: this is what the Research & Solidarity network of experts and academics, which publishes its 20th edition of “La France associative en movement”, a national and region-by-region study.
According to the latter, France has between 1.4 and 1.5 million active associations. “The year 2020 marked a 1.6% decline in the workforce, followed by a rebound of 2.7% in 2021, which makes it possible to exceed the pre-crisis level”, reports the study. In 2021, private non-profit employment within associations and foundations represented 149,000 employers for 1.923 million employees, “i.e. 9.8% of total employees in the private sector”. The payroll reached nearly 46.5 billion euros, or 7% of the total for the private sector.
The health and social sector – health, medico-social accommodation and social action without accommodation – is over-represented. It “represents, on its own, 58% of the salaried workforce (more than a million jobs) and of the payroll”, within 35,000 establishments, specifies the study.
Another lesson is that the number of young people on work-study programs has increased. Over the past few years, it “has jumped 34% in the private sector as a whole and 64% in the voluntary sector”. This represented 3.9% of all work-study students in the private sector in 2020. With 39,000 contracts in 2021, this ratio fell to 4.9%.
“Among the most active sectors in this area, sport comes first with around 10,000 contracts, an increase of 77% between 2020 and 2021”, underlines Research & Solidarity, which also notes the tax contribution of the voluntary sector. For the year 2020, nearly 34,000 associations and foundations were subject to payroll tax, for an amount paid of 2.4 billion euros. And 117,000 have been corporate tax for an amount of 144 million euros.
“It is only about the apparent face of the added value of the association”, insists in his preface to the study the sociologist Roger Sue. “90% of them work solely on voluntary work and on the basis of reciprocity, which are much more difficult to quantify,” he notes.