06 December 2022,   12:13
Almost 600 000 socially vulnerable individuals currently reside in Georgia, about half of which are capable - Irakli Garibashvili

We should offer jobs rather than social allowances to our capable citizens. Work has been launched towards this end and the program proven useful in successful countries of Europe will be presented in the coming weeks. Such a statement made today the Prime Minister of Georgia.

“Existing social policy evidences that current trend is alarming in general. Let us say straight that we got our adult and capable citizens used to unemployment, poverty and idleness under the current social policy. In real sense, a capable but socially vulnerable citizen is not motivated to find a new job as they are afraid of losing the social allowances provided by the state. They are not incentivized to improve their basic living conditions and it is a nightmare of course. It is alarming, of course. We in the Government of Georgia should make decisive and effective steps forward. I already had a conversation on this topic with my fellow cabinet members within the Economic Team. I have an idea and initiative to set up a Work Group, which will be led by Levan Davitashvili, Deputy Prime Minister of Georgia. We will be presenting a new Social Vision - a Social Policy - on changing the current malpractice with a new, healthy one in the coming few weeks. It means that we should create a new program. It will be aimed at creating jobs in the public sector, instead of the social allowances. Our capable citizens should be offered employment opportunities. We can create thousands and dozens of thousands of jobs for each city and municipality. Work and discussion has been launched towards this end within the team - fellow cabinet members. I believe that in a few weeks we will be able to present a program, which is already tested, measured and proven in successful countries of Europe as being the right vision. I wish to repeat that we got our citizens used to unemployment, poverty and idleness. It is an unbearable situation indeed. As of today, we have almost 600 000 socially vulnerable citizens in the country, out of which at least 200 000 - if not more - or half of them are capable of working. They are reluctant to find jobs due to the current social security policy, of course. I know a lot of cases when a person buys a new TV set or a fridge, resulting in higher social scoring and revoked social security.

Also, if seasonal jobs are readily available, they are not interested to work extra and earn more income. Let me repeat that it is a true nightmare. Thus, we should create a flexible system, which will allow the current social allowances to be earned as salaries and wages at least, but for a specific public engagement. Besides, they need to have a possibility to work extra and feel free to work at two or three places and earn income from multiple parallel sources to get more TV sets and fridges for their households, to improve living conditions and other. It should be our main aim and goal. I have a great desire to start a new program from January 2022. I believe that it will entirely change the current reality and we will thus establish a new culture of labor. Population of Georgia, our capable fellow citizens will have a craving, possibility, incentive to have a real job. Our citizens should get used to work. Of course, everyone wants to find new employment opportunities, but if the state fails to create conditions, it will be perceived as a preventive obstacle. Within the scope of this program, we will develop and engage vocational training centers. People will get retrained at many such places. We will jointly come up with several-week-long programs. We did have a discussion about it already and intend to change this static, frozen situation in real terms”, - said Irakli Garibashvili.