The Ministry of Labour, Family and Social Affairs has proposed preparing lists of locales with extremely poor and socially-excluded communities, intending to draw maps showing these pockets of poverty with an accuracy pinpointing individual streets or houses, and initiate other measures to assist residents in these areas, the Sme daily reported.
These maps will show, for instance, communities with an especially high unemployment rate or with a large concentration of mothers under age 18 and the ministry said the state will try to include them in wider society and get them away from the margins of society, helping them with nursery schools, accommodation, or advice on how to keep a job. But the ministry said it may also initiate certain limitations: according to the proposed rules, only those who complete elementary-school education could get a driving license.
The maps of poverty areas will be drawn based on various criteria but without regard to race or nationality, Sme wrote in its August 3 edition. The daily reported that coalition parties agree with the ministry’s measures but also fear complications stemming from the proposed free contraceptives and voluntary sterilisation, noting that there had been scandals in the past when Roma women claimed they were forcibly or unwittingly sterilised.
The ministry stated that there are about 700 communities with about 200,000 residents that could be defined as socially-excluded. The ministry’s head of the department of socially-excluded communities, Martin Varinčík, said the idea is to support and help marginalized people but not to suppress them or provide effortless gifts. Sme wrote that experts generally approve of the proposed plan.
Compiled by Zuzana Vilikovská from press reports
The Slovak Spectator cannot vouch for the accuracy of the information presented in its Flash News postings.
3. Aug 2011 at 10:00