Coronavirus – Social measures needed to support workers and self-employed |  Moviment Graffitti Malta.
18/03/2020

Coronavirus – Social measures needed to support workers and self-employed

Moviment Graffitti welcomes Prime Minister Robert Abela’s statement where he claimed that workers should not carry the burden of the coronavirus crisis. Therefore we believe that, together with the positive measures that the Government is taking to ensure the health and safety of the people, a number of social measures should be implemented to support workers and those who have the least resources in society.  

 

Moviment Graffitti is presenting a set of proposals in this regard: 

 

Help for workers on precarious contracts and for the self-employed 

 

The worst hit by the decline in economic activity are workers on contacts which do not guarantee fixed hours of work and those self-employed persons who live from hand to mouth. Many of these have ended up without any income, or with very low income. There should be a system in place where these persons will be temporarily eligible to receive unemployment benefits. 

 

Measure regarding loan repayments  

 

The State should introduce a measure wherin those who have bank loans (including home and business-related loans) would be allowed to postpone, for a few months, payments due to the bank.   


 An interest-free loans fund for companies 

 

There should be a Government fund offering interest-free loans to private companies, especially so that these will be able to pay their employees. These funds should be paid back slowly to the Government without interest, once the economy starts picking up again. While it is commendable for the Government to help businesses during this difficult moment, it is not right that companies, which until a few days ago were making huge profits, expect the people to carry the burden as soon as their profits temporarily decline. It is not fair that their profits remain private, while their losses become shared by the public. Therefore, our proposal is for help by the Government to take the form of an interest-free loan which will eventually be repaid.  

 

Moratorium on redundancies 

 

There should be a temporary moratorium on worker redundancies. This is a time for solidarity, not a time for workers to be laid off after being used.  

 

Quarantine Leave 

 

The Government should put into force a special leave entitlement for workers who are constrained to live in quarantine (and who cannot work from home). This special leave should also be applicable in the eventuality of a national lockdown. Half of this leave should be deducted from workers’ sick leave entitlement, while the other half should be special leave with pay, partly subsidised by the Government and partly paid by employers.  


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Coronavirus - Jinħtieġu miżuri soċjali li jwieżnu lill-ħaddiema u lis-self-employed


Il-Moviment Graffitti jilqa’ l-istqarrija tal-Prim Ministru Robert Abela fejn qal li l-ħaddiema m’għandhomx ikunu dawk li jġorru l-piż tal-kriżi tal-coronavirus. Għalhekk nemmnu li, flimkien mal-miżuri pożittivi li qed jieħu l-Gvern sabiex jiżgura s-saħħa u s-sigurtà tan-nies, għandhom jiġu mwettqa wkoll miżuri soċjali li jwieżnu lill-ħaddiema u lil dawk li għandhom l-inqas riżorsi fis-soċjetà. 

 

Il-Moviment Graffitti qed iressaq sett ta’ propsti f’dan ir-rigward: 

 

Għajnuna lill-ħaddiema fuq kuntratti prekarji u lis-self-employed 

 

L-agħar milquta bit-tnaqqas fl-attività eknomika huma l-ħaddiema fuq kuntratti li ma jiżgurawx sigħat ta xogħol fissi u dawk il-persuni self-employed li jaqilgħuha u jikluha. Ħafna minn dawn il-persuni spiċċaw mingħajr dħul, jew bi dħul baxx ħafna. Għandu jkun hemm sistema fejn dawn il-persuni jkunu temporanjament eliġibbli sabiex jirċievu l-benefiċċju tal-qgħad (unemployment benefit). 

 

Miżura dwar ħlas ta’ loans 

 

L-Istat għandu jdaħħal miżura li biha min għandu loans mal-bank (inklużi home loans u loans marbutin man-negozju) jitħalla, għal ftit xhur, jipposponi l-ħlasijiet dovuti lill-bank. 

 

Fond ta’ self mingħajr interessi lill-kumpaniji 

 

Għandu jkun hemm fond tal-Gvern li joffri self mingħajr interessi lill-kumpaniji privati, speċjalment sabiex dawn ikunu jistgħu jkomplu jħallsu lill-ħaddiema tagħhom. Dawn il-flus għandhom jingħataw lura lill-Gvern, mingħajr interessi, bil-mod il-mod wara li terġa’ tirpilja lattività ekonomika. Filwaqt li huwa tajjeb li l-Gvern jgħin lin-negozji f’dan il-mument diffiċli, lanqas huwa sew li kumpaniji li sa ftit tal-jiem ilu kienu qed jagħmlu profitti kbar jistennew li l-poplu jġorr il-piż fil-ħin li dawn il-profitti naqsulhom temporanjament. Mhuwiex ġust li l-profitti tagħhom ikunu privati, filwaqt li t-telf tagħhom isir pubbliku. Għalhekk il-proposta tagħna hija li l-għajnuna mill-Gvern tieħu l-forma ta’ self mingħajr interessi, li jitħallas lura maż-żmien. 

 

Moratorju fuq tkeċċijiet 

 

Għandu jkun hemm moratorju temporanju fuq tkeċċijiet tal-ħaddiema. Issa huwa żmien is-solidarjetà, u mhux żmien fejn il-ħaddiema jispiċċaw mormija bħal lumija li ntgħasret. 

 

Leave tal-kwarantina 

 

Il-Gvern għandu jdaħħal fis-seħħ leave speċjali għal ħaddiema li qed ikollhom jagħmlu l-kwarantina (u li tulha ma jkunux jistgħu jaħdmu mid-dar). Dan il-leave speċjali jkun jgħodd anki fl-eventwalità ta’ lockdown fil-pajjiż. Nofs dan il-leave għandu jittieħed mill-intitolament għas-sick leave tal-ħaddiema, filwaqt li n-nofs l-ieħor ikun leave specajli bi ħlas fejn il-Gvern jissussidja parti mill-paga, u l-parti l-oħra titħallas minn min iħaddem.