Thousands sign petition against changes to maternity benefits

  • 2009-05-25
  • By TBT staff

RIGA- An estimated 20,000 peoplehave signed a statement stating that they will support filing a petition to theConstitutional Court of Latvia if the principle of legitimate expectation isignored in changing the system of childcare and maternity benefits. as"Maminu klubs" organization's head Sandija Salaka informed LETA.

Mother's Club head SandijaSalaka told the press that one of the most severe problems is that parents donot know what to expect from the future.

"Parents understandthe complicated situation in the country, and they are not against thenecessary changes but the way the information about the pending changes iscirculated, and that these changes are approved hastily and secretly,"said Salaka.

As reported, the benefits will be cut starting July 1, which is against theprinciple of legitimate expectation, according to which any such changes maycome into force no sooner than in 306 days.

Salaka explained that if Saeima supports reducing the benefits, approximately5000 people affected by these changes will be ready to go to court.

The current signature drive is to prove topoliticians that a large part of society is discontented with the government'sdecisions. These people are waiting for the government meeting on May 26, wherethe matter of childcare and maternity benefits will be discussed.