Zoran works, a third of Ljubljana on benefits

The May meeting of the City Council of Ljubljana was similar to all previous. Only the agenda is getting shorter from one meeting to another and the mayor, who allegedly still operates the government from his ?frozen? position, doesn?t want to speak about development projects. Themes, which were discussed, were focused on social assistance policies on one side and hope to solve traffic problems in Ljubljana with electric cars and 3000 power spaces to charge these cars on the other side. Both in conflict with the times we are currently living in.

Slovenia has fallen from top to bottom of European Union on the scale of economic growth. Growth can no longer be measured, unfortunately we can only measure the decline. We share the last place with Cyprus. Government has sent a reform programme to Brussels, about which it can be heard that it is deficient and needs fast implementation. In a way, this makes sense. ?Frozen? leader takes the case of Ljubljana?s politics to macro national level. Despite debts and increased unemployment the mayor, with the support of his councillors, decided to maintain or increase funding for welfare. 78.000 out of 280.000 residents of Ljubljana are receiving some kind of social assistance. Since 2007 the mayor increased them for 40 %! In the capital city of our country, where according to all statistics the standard of living is the highest, almost one third of population is receiving social assistance. Elegant buying of voters at the expenses of taxpayers? money.

Social programs are necessary, I support them also on European level. But we must be aware of seriousness of the times we live in. We have to realise that many people, who are currently receiving social assistance, would be much happier if society could find appropriate jobs for them. Any kind of job. In this way society can maintain the value of human dignity. Also MOL City assistants, mostly women, work very hard in the preparation of proposals for City Council. However, the final decision is in the hands of politics, with mayor on the forefront. It is up to politics to act responsible to our future. We cannot just give money for so long, that in the end nothing will remain for those in real need for social assistance. For those, who really cannot live without it.

Considering unenviable situation of our country in Europe and high indebtedness, we must prove ourselves also with commitment to development and economic growth. We won?t be able to forever share, what we didn?t create. Creativity and creation of environment, in which people can work, not just live on social assistance. This is what Slovenia needs. We need practices, which arose after the Ice Age. Today it is time to unfreeze job opportunities. We need greater awareness about impacts of alcohol, tobacco and drugs for a healthy future, especially for young people. We need awareness of healthy eating habits. There are many, who in abundance of food avoid food, because of the cult of thinness. Thinness, which leads to anorexia on one side, and people who can?t afford to buy food on the other. Today MOL pays social support for anorexia, instead of preventive awareness of healthy food.

I am asking myself, are in less developed regions even more people receiving social assistance, as it is practice in Ljubljana. Is this the case let?s say in Metlika or Ljutomer, which are far from the heart of Slovenia? When I?ve spoken about the necessity of conditions for job creation three years ago, many have laughed. Among them, the mayor and ?frozen? leader of ruling party PS. Today, he is repeating my word, but works the opposite. He creates society, which depends on social assistance.

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