Prime Minister Helle Thorning-Schmidt has presented the government’s emergency
plan to help some 30,000 people in 2013 who risk dropping out of the
unemployment benefit scheme to land on social security.
“This will provide peace of mind for those who have come into a very difficult
situation,” Thorning-Schmidt said at her weekly news conference.
Called ‘New and better phasing in of the benefit reform’, the initiative
prolongs the re-education period by six months and introduces a temporary
labour market benefit to run until 2016.
Under the benefit, family providers will be able to draw 80 per cent of the
maximum unemployment benefit, while non-providers will be awarded 60 per
Those on the new labour market benefit will have to make themselves available
in a different way than those on unemployment benefit, among other ways in
job activation measures and utility work.
Financing for the initiative is to be found by increasing subscriptions for
unemployment fund members in 2013, 2014 and 2015.
“..We are amending the much too fast phasing-in (Ed: of the reform) that the
previous government and the Danish People’s Party decided in 2010,” the
prime minister said, poignantly leaving out naming her coalition partner,
the Social Liberals of Economy Minister Margrethe Vestager.
The unemployment benefit issue has dogged the Social Democrats and Socialist
People’s Party since they took power in 2011. Neither party supported the
reform when it was put in place by the previous Liberal-led government in
The Social Liberals, who are now part of the current centre-left coalition,
joined the Liberals, Conservatives and Danish People’s Party in supporting
the measure at the time.
When passed in 2010, the then Liberal-Conservative government forecast that it
would affect 2-4,000 people each year, who would drop out of the
unemployment benefit system and into the lesser benefits of the social
security system. That figure has been re-estimated on several occasions,
with the latest estimate that it will affect 30,000 people in 2013 alone.
FACEBOOK – Follow
Politiken’s News in English