Greece plans safety net for its poorest

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Greece plans safety net for its poorest

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As the Greek people get poorer, the Athens government is planning to introduce what it calls a “minimum guaranteed income” scheme.

Details of who it will cover are sketchy, but the poverty fighting measure will start with a pilot programme next year before being expanded to the whole country in 2015.

The announcement comes as the amount of disposable income in Greek households continues to shrink dramatically due to cuts in salaries and social security payments.

Economics Professor Panayotis Petrakis from the University of Athens told euronews: “The way the crisis was handled over the past three years caused a big structural shock to the Greek economy. This, in turn created a massive social burden as unemployment sky rocketed to the extent that no one can predict how long it could take to rectify that.”

With more than a quarter of Greeks out of work and salaries and social benefit payments sharply lower, disposable income slumped by 3.1 billion euros between April and June from the same period last year.