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Greek govt’s social program – counterweight to “Red Loans” bill

Greek government announced a package of social measures as counterweight to the “red loans” bill that will be voted tonight in the Greek Parliament.

The program includes among others: health care to uninsured citizens and migrants with legal papers, broadening the criteria for the ‘social invoice’ of Public Power Company, Welfare work for unemployed, free meals in schools, benefits for families with 3 children.

The program aims to alleviate the humanitarian crisis and it will be submitted to the Parliament as the government’s “parallel program” which are officially “Measures to speed up government work and other provisions” for 2016.

The program foresees:

– Establishment of Community Centers, so called “KEP for the Poor” that will operate under the local authorities and will offer services to the vulnerable groups as well as interconnection of these groups with social programs and services.

– Complete health care services for the uninsured citizens, the vulnerable groups of the society and the migrants with legal papers, free access to public health services and strengthening of  health care in hospitals, doctors and medicine access.

– Enable municipalities to exempt vulnerable society groups from local taxes and fees (long-term unemployed, families with 3 children, single-parent families and other beneficiaries)

– Extension of the Humanitarian Crisis program that offered free electricity, food and housing to some 300,000 people in 2015.

– Facilitate procedures for doctor’s hiring in public hospitals.

– Incentives for doctors to do their ‘community service’ in remote areas and islands
– Establishment of a General Hospital Thera
– Hiring of the public service contest winners (ASEP) of 1997.

– Creation of community service programs for the unemployed
– Support for new professionals with social tariffs (DEYA)
– Six-month suspension of the auction of VIOME

– Regulation of issues of local authorities staff in border areas and the transportation of staff with disabilities
Legislation for the cremation of the deseased
– Option to move municipal police to prisons
– Resolved the issue of forfeiture of guarantee letters to farmers-employers
– Settlement of issues concerning “unhealthy labor” benefits
– Restart of supportive  teaching in high schools

The program is expected to be voted in the Parliament next Wednesday together with the bill for the civil partnership.

PS I have no idea how this program will be financed, maybe it’s part of the Juncker’s and EU humanitarian aid for Greece.

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