Alarming statistics
29 August, 2015
Alarming statistics
Out of 400 thousand socially vulnerable, only 4 700 are looking for jobs.

According to Ministry of Healthcare and Labor, there are approximately 400 thousand people classified as socially vulnerable in Georgia. In order to improve the general social background and make this class more active, the ministry has decided to initiate a new project named Worknet.ge, which gives anyone an opportunity to find a job, with the socially vulnerable being the chief target group. However, Bpn.ge was surprised to
find Tea Sturua, manager of the new employment project, unable to hide her disappointment – apparently, the socially vulnerable refuse not only job offers, but registration at the website altogether. Low salaries and fear of losing welfare eligibility are named as prime causes of that. Last week’s data, provided to Bpn.ge by the Employment Fund, shows that Worknet.ge currently has 45 283 registered users, but only 4 700 of them come from the ranks of the socially vulnerable. Considering their total amount, this figure is little more than a drop in the ocean.

“As data for the first quarter of 2015 shows, about 7 000 socially vulnerable have refused registration at the job-seeking website.”

Tea Sturua, head of the Health Ministry’s Employment Programs Department:

“Naturally, most of the jobs offered by our new project can hardly be called well-paid – their monthly pay ranges from 250 to 500 GEL. This is why so many people are declining them altogether, even if we call and beg them personally. They even refuse to register at the website. As data for the first quarter of 2015 shows, about 7 000 socially vulnerable have refused registration.

Now we are planning a new project that should shake these people up a bit and make them more active, even if it means that we’ll have pay salaries for their day jobs.”
According to Zurab Putkaradze, chairman of Janmrteli Samkaro (Healthy World) NGO, the main cause for the socially vulnerable refusing jobs is their instability, in addition to the low wages:

“Take a typical poorly paying job, deduct food and transportation costs from its salary and you will get the same amount of money as you get from welfare. Therefore, the people prefer sitting around and collecting welfare checks to working. Besides, many of these jobs are unstable and there is a high chance of a newly employed person becoming unemployed again in several months, and re-registering for welfare is associated with certain difficulties. The state should give these people guarantees – something to make them lose the feeling of being unprotected. Welfare payments should continue for up to a year after a person becomes employed, which will allow uninterrupted aid in case he or she suddenly ends up fired. As long as the state keeps ignoring the socially vulnerable, they will continue refusing to take risks.”

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