Publication

Human rights advocate: You need to think less of how many Ukrainians need your help and actually help them instead

Open letter to Pavlo Rozenko, Minister of Social Policy

Dear Mr. Minister,

In your interview to LIGABusinessInform You complained about lack of information on how many Ukrainians need help from your Ministry.

I hope You were being honest.

So, I will be honest in return.

I am falling under the impression that such thoughts prevent You and your subordinates from providing actual help to those, who already appealed to You and already is in need.

Starting from July 2014 our non-governmental human rights organization has been raising the question at all levels regarding making the necessary amendments into the Procedure for calculation of the average salary (income, cash security) for calculation of payments under the mandatory state social insurance (approved by Resolution of the Cabinet of Ministers of Ukraine No. 1266 dated 26.09.2001 as subsequently amended). We have already lodged two official appeals to Your Ministry.

The said Procedure presents an insurmountable obstacle in the way of the Crimean migrants’ receiving their due unemployment benefits in the amount corresponding to their pensionable service and the amount of salary that they had been receiving before dismissal and movement to the continental territory of Ukraine.

We speak of specific people, of a family of migrants composed of a father, a mother and two children, who moved to Kherson from the Crimea in June-July 2014. Their pensionable service and the amount of salary before dismissal enabled them to count on the unemployment benefit of at least UAH 9,000. However, Your subordinates in Kherson Employment Centre threw cold water on the poor parents giving them alms of UAH 936.65 per each. In total, this makes up UAH 1,873.30 for the whole family…

The reason behind this is very trite: provisions of the Procedure and unwillingness of Your subordinates to apply its certain provisions, which could justify the other approach to calculation of the average monthly salary for the displaced persons. That is the first point. And the second point is that Your Ministry is too stubborn to notice the problem in the Procedure itself, and ignores all our demands to address the Government to amend the Procedure, which turned out to be discriminating the Crimean migrants.

Thus, the enterprise, for which the parents worked, did indeed cease to pay the unified social tax into the Ukrainian budget far back in February, 2014. The parents did indeed work for this enterprise for a couple of months more and left in June, 2014. Technically, the absence of data regarding the employer’s payment of the UST in the period from February to May constitutes grounds for non-inclusion of the salary received during such period when calculating the average monthly salary of a person, who appealed for the unemployment benefit. But does this really have anything to do with employees, moreover, when we speak of Crimea?

And now back to the displaced family: let me ask You, Mr. Minister, on their behalf, do You think they are interested in how many people in Ukraine need help?

I hope some day the Ministry will finally know their number, maybe, the Ministry officials will even get bonuses and awards for getting such information, but will this help those specific migrants, who remained loyal to their country, trusted it and were so deeply mistaken in the sincerity of provisions of its Constitution stating that Ukraine is “a social state” and that “human rights and freedoms and their guarantees define the content and directions” of its activities.

You may now enter into Your “register of those in need”: the family of Ya. from Kherson.

Great people think of great things, but wise people do their bit.

What You are, and what You want to be – decide for Yourself.

 

Roman Martynovskyi, Regional Centre of Human Rights NGO

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