Welcome, 77 artists, 40 different points of Attica welcomes you by singing Erotokritos an epic romance written at 1713 by Vitsentzos Kornaros

Wednesday, June 4, 2014

ILO: Austerity Inflicting Human Suffering

A recent report by the International Labor Organization claims that austerity measures have increased poverty in Greece as well as in other European countries hit by the financial crisis. The 357-page report published on Tuesday says that unemployment, low wages and higher taxes “have contributed to increases in poverty and social exclusion, now affecting 123 million people in the European Union, 24% of the population, many of them children, women, older persons and persons with disabilities.” According to the report austerity measures such as cuts in pensions, social benefits and healthcare funding, don’t lead to economic growth that would generate jobs and would lead to more members of society contributing to the economy. On the other hand, countries like Ireland, Portugal and Greece where austerity measures have been implemented, have experienced a drop in consumption. “Poverty in Greece rose to a historically high level [since 2008], exceeding 35 % of the population in 2013, inflicting intense human suffering as many families found themselves no longer able to access the basic necessities for a dignified life,” notes the report. The report also points out that child poverty has increased in 19 of the 28 countries of the European Union between 2007 and 2012. During the last year “more than one-quarter of children in Bulgaria, Greece, Italy, Romania and Spain were living at risk of poverty,” the ILO report claims. ILO stresses that a major reason for concern is cuts in healthcare spending. “More specifically, in Greece, Spain and Portugal, citizens’ access to public health care services has been seriously constrained, to the extent that there are reported increases in mortality and morbidity,” the report says.