Spanish Unions Demand Better Wealth Distribution

Prensa Latina News Agency

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Demostrations have been taking place against the pension system. (Photo taken from http://www.alamy.com).

Union members will defend the pension system after the government approved what they call a “miserable” 0.25 percent rise in costs

Spanish unions are launching nationwide protests on Feb. 22 to demand greater wealth distribution and improved public policies.

Union members will defend the pension system after the government approved what they call a “miserable” 0.25 percent rise in costs.

In 2013, Spanish Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy declared a three-month suspension of the 2011 reform articles, approved by former Prime Minister Jose Luis Rodríguez Zapatero, affecting early and partial retirement.

Protest organizers are demanding Rajoy’s government abandon the policy and “guarantee pensions for present and future generations.”

“How can we ask our parents to pay a private pension besides our education and health care if they can barely feed us?” asked Victoria Portas, a state coordinator for the Defense of the Public Pension System.

Portas said they are demanding a “redistributive, supporting and sustainable social security system to cover everyone.”

“Today and tomorrow’s pensioners will mobilize next Feb. 22 in the whole country against the miserable 0.25 percent rise and for decent pensions,” concluded Portas.

Unions and pensioners took to the streets last week in almost all of Spain’s provincial capitals to protest unfavorable pension policies.

During a protest in Madrid, Workers’ General Union leader Mari Carmen Barrera said Rajoy should explain why the Spanish economy is growing three percent while pensions are only growing 0.25 percent.

“Last week, when the government’s president asked the Spanish people to save for their pension, he was implying that future pensions will not be enough to live,” Barrera said.

“That’s an intolerable situation.”

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