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Greek Parliament Workers Escape Austerity

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parliamentGreek Parliament workers will be exempted from further austerity measures the government has imposed on workers, pensioners and the poor after Prime Minister Antonis Samaras backed off on his promise to include them.

The workers won the exemption last month after threatening to walk off the floor during a Parliamentary debate on a $17.45 billion spending cut and tax hike plan, a strike that would have prevented a vote and jeopardized crucial aid from international lenders. That set Samaras to say he would go after them again.

While continuing to enjoy special privileges for limited work, including higher pay than most civil servants, and bonuses, they said they will be watchful of any attempt by the government to include them in pay cuts, tax hikes and slashed pensions.

Despite their protected status, the Parliament workers refused to work on Dec. 12 and threatened to stay off the job to block prospective legislation that would reduce their pay and benefits. Some 511 of the workers who belong to the ruling New Democracy Conservative party headed by Samaras objected to any idea of further cuts.

The government reassured them, despite Samaras’ declaration they would have to share in the sacrifice hitting most Greeks except for politicians, the rich and tax evaders, that they too would be further insulated from the country’s crushing economic crisis after their pay had previously been cut in line with across-the-board austerity.

The clerks said they feared the government would cut their pay 25 percent more to go along with similar cuts in the rest of society, and that they would lose traveling expenses and reduce overtime pay from 71 hours a month to 50 although the Parliament ordinarily keeps short hours.

Combined, they said that would cut their pay by 400-600 euros ($522-$784) extra pay that by itself is nearly double the reduced pensions of many Greek elderly. They stressed that since 2011 they have been included in a unified payroll plan that in the last two years saw their pay cut 52 percent.

(Source: OnAir24)

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  • Susan Daltas

    I cannot see any justification for this.  Surely we should all make sacrifices – starting with politicians and parliament workers, not exempting them.

  • The maverik

    A country with corrupt politicians is a country with no justice…Greece is thee most corrupt country in Europe…A survey revealed by Transparency that Greece is the most corrupt country in Europe even without Transparency’s report, Greece is thee most corrupt country and all 300 member of parliament are corrupt without a doubt…

  • Guest

     The government should not have backed down as the country is dire trouble
    and no one should be exempt unfortunately… If they want to walk off then they
    can do so. The government should hire new people who need a job as Greece does
    have a 25% unemployment rate and they should loose their permanent employment
    status for doing so as well and all entitlements associated for walking off the
    job..

  • Adam

    Wow, big surprise, a politicians in Greece takes car of his own and leaves the people to suffer. The “Greek boat” is sinking and the priminister is giving his crew seats at the end of the ship. Can anyone tell me why Greeks continue to put these people in power?

  • The maverik

    It’s simple…Greek people are “S-T-U-P-I-D”, uneducated, brainless do not know who is a liar from the honest…They just believe anyone who says I will do this for you, I will do that for you and they go to vote for him and the show continue every time…

  • The maverik

    There is no justice in this country at all…Some laws are designed to suit some corrupt politicians and some laws are designed to punish the poor…Samara and all Greek politicians are corrupt…They just care after themselves and not the welfare of the people and the country…Greece will never prosper whilewe have these corrupt politicians in power…They are a disgrace to the country…

  • mathematics

    Is it a surprise ?   

  • The maverik

    @942b2edea347d1cb6d59ca28ce5d7da5:disqus  Yes it is a surprise…It shows that there is no justice at all in this
    bloody country…Samara is a coward and traitor to his people and the
    country…After all we are all the same with this he divides people into
    categories…Samara is a coward and a traitor and he should be treated
    as such… 

  • KERRY DOLMAN

     - sack them – their are plenty of decent, unemployed Greeks wsilling and only too ready to take their place – why should they or anyone else be excluded from pay cuts etc???????????????
     

  • KERRY DOLMAN

     - simply because there is no one else !!!!!!!!!!!!

  • KERRY DOLMAN

     - what are you basing these comments on? – I have lived in Greece for twenty plus years – I am married to a highly intelligent, extremely decent Greek man and  we have been blessed with a strong minded, honest, outspoken daughter – during my time here in Greece I have met many, many decent Greeks and they were definitely not ”S-T-U-P-I-D” – many Greeks are very well educated – they are not ”brainless” but yes they are human and as such want to believe that people – especially the people they put into power – are honest not liars

  • The maverik

    If they are not S-T-U-P-I-D as I said they would not elect the same people again and again…After what has happen I would refuse to elect anyone from the old guards specially when I know that all Greek politicians are corrupt…There is something called “Nomination” if you know what I mean by that…

  • Cypriot

    The innocent suffer whilst the guilty live in luxury. This is unjust!