Skip to content
Catholic Online Logo

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

4/29/2013 (1 year ago)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

Civil servants haven't faced layoffs in nearly 150 years.

The Greek government has started doing what was unthinkable, at least until recently, which is to fire public sector workers. The layoffs come as part of a wider austerity plan and are naturally very unpopular in the financially troubled state.

Greek civil servants, dressed in traditional garb, protest pending cuts to their jobs.

Greek civil servants, dressed in traditional garb, protest pending cuts to their jobs.

Highlights

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

4/29/2013 (1 year ago)

Published in Europe

Keywords: Greece, debt, civil servants, layoffs, protests


ATHENS, GREECE (Catholic Online) - The first of some 180,000 layoffs have started for the public sector workforce, sparking protests and challenges. The layoffs are part of a broader austerity plan for the Greek state and a condition to receive more bailout money for the troubled economy.

Public sector jobs have employed almost a third of all Greeks. According to national statistics, about 29 percent of Greeks found employment in the lucrative sector. Until now, it has been an easy job.

Greek law has specifically protected public sector workers since the 1880s, when a law was passed that provided permanent protection for civil servants. The law was necessary then, as each new government would come into power and immediately fire the previous set of servants and hire an all-new batch. This created major problems with each transition.

However, once the law protected civil service jobs, the political hires did not end. New governments simply kept the previous civil servants as they were required, and hired their own people to work alongside them. This lead to an ever-expanding bureaucracy and a growing burden on the state. All the while, it made the government less efficient.

Now, the civil sector in Greece is massive and self-entitled. That makes the latest plans which involve 180,000 permanent layoffs, extremely unpopular.

Many civil servants have been protesting the pending layoffs for some time, sometimes demonstrating in traditional garb and carrying flags.

For now, the initial layoffs will come from people with disciplinary issues. The first two layoffs are almost symbolic, with the government laying off one person for stealing and another for taking 110 days of unexcused absence.

The law also speeds up the appeals process and allows for employees to be suspended if they are accused of a serious offense.

Prime Minister Anotnis Samaras is referring to the law as an "upgrade."

In essence, the law truly is an upgrade. It is an opportunity for the government to cut some of the waste out of the system and to reorganize at least a part of the bureaucracy. Meanwhile, as layoffs and natural attrition eliminate some jobs,  old positions will be phased out and new ones created as needed. There will still be plenty of jobs for hire in the future.

However, nations cannot fire their way to prosperity any more than they can tax their way there. Dismissing people in times of high unemployment means fewer taxpayers and more people on public assistance programs than before. There is a cost to layoffs for the government.

However, bailout money comes with strings attached, and this is one of those strings. Hopefully the Greek government will take advantage of the opportunity to make badly needed reforms which will help much more than hinder.

---


Pope Francis: end world hunger through 'Prayer and Action'


Copywriter 2015 - Distributed by THE NEWS CONSORTIUM

Pope Francis Prayer Intentions for February 2015
General Intention:
That prisoners, especially the young, may be able to rebuild lives of dignity.
Missionary Intention: That married people who are separated may find welcome and support in the Christian community.



Comments


More Europe

France uneasy as drones spotted over U.S. Embassy, landmarks - Terrorists suspected Watch

Image of Soldiers guard several sites in Paris as the threat of terror attacks grows.

By Marshall Connolly, Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

French officials are worried that a terror attack may be imminent in Paris after drones were spotted flying over several landmarks including the U.S. Embassy. Police were unable to locate the operators. PARIS, FRANCE (Catholic Online) - The AFP is reporting that for ... continue reading


U.S. soldiers dare Putin just 300 yards from Russian border Watch

Image of A U.S. Army armored personal carrier during a military parade in Estonia to mark the nation's independence day.

By Matt Waterson (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

A sign of growing tension in Europe, and possibly a warning to Russia occurred in the Baltic nation of Estonia, as it marked its independence day with a military parade that prominently featured troops and equipment from NATO forces - including U.S. troops - that ... continue reading


Former Russian soldier reveals that Putin has sent troops into Ukraine! Watch

Image of Moscow denied that Russian soldiers were in Crimea when it was taken, but that proved to be a lie.

By Matt Waterson (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

The ceasefire that was agreed to in Minsk by the leaders of France, Germany, Ukraine and Russia did not last even a day before Russian supported rebels broke it by shelling the besieged town of Debaltseve which prompted a withdrawal of Ukraine forces. LOS ... continue reading


Italy deploys 1,800 soldiers in response to possible ISIS attacks on Vatican and Italy Watch

Image of The Islamic State's large presence in Libya has worried many in Europe, and fears are growing that an attempt could be made on the Pope's life.

By Matt Waterson (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Because of the growing power of the Islamic State in Libya, as well as threats made by the group against the Vatican and Pope Francis, security across Italy and the Vatican has been stepped up, officials revealed on February 18. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) ... continue reading


Forced into sex work, trafficked people suffer unbelievable abuse Watch

Image of Many young girls forced into sex work forego returning to their homes and families due to their shameful circumstances.

By Alex Whiting, Thomson Reuters Foundation

From dog attacks, strangulation and rape, to injured anglers being thrown overboard and left to drown, trafficked people can suffer extreme violence and severe health problems no matter where they end up working, researchers have found. LONDON (Thomson Reuters ... continue reading


Brought to light: German Catholic archdiocese reveals more wealth than Vatican Watch

Image of The Roman Catholic archdiocese of Cologne in Germany has since disclosed it is worth $3.82 billion in U.S. dollars, making it richer than the Vatican.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

In an effort on the part of Pope Francis to make the finances of the Catholic Church more transparent, surprising things have been learned. The Roman Catholic archdiocese of Cologne in Germany has since disclosed it is worth $3.82 billion in U.S. dollars, ... continue reading


Copenhagen next on Islamic hit list: two terrorist attacks rock Danish capital within hours of each other Watch

Image of Danish police have started a nation wide manhunt for one or possibly more suspects who were involved in two shootings in Copenhagen, which left two dead and five injured.

By Matt Waterson (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Danish police have mounted a nationwide manhunt for one gunman or more, who was involved in the shooting of a forum on free speech that left one dead and three police officers injured before fleeing in a stolen car; a second attack occurred the same day, and ... continue reading


Playing the West like a fiddle: Putin signs 'peace treaty' while sending tanks and troops into Ukraine Watch

Image of Russian President Vladimir Putin is playing the western world like a fiddle.

By Matt Waterson (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

While the leaders of France, Germany, Ukraine and Russia met over a marathon session to formulate and sign a ceasefire agreement intended to end the almost year long civil war in Ukraine, activity along the Russo-Ukrainian border has left many skeptical that this ... continue reading


Priceless, 'lost' Leonard da Vinci painting rescued from bank vault in Italy Watch

Image of The painting had been rediscovered in 2013 in a collection of 400 artworks kept in a Swiss vault. The authorities then were alerted to the existence of the painting -- but the portrait went missing again.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

A painting by the man who defined the term "Renaissance," Leonardo da Vinci, has been rescued by Italian authorities from a bank vault in Switzerland. While described as "lost" - in was more than likely stolen, the painting was at risk for selling in the black ... continue reading


Notorious 'Bishop of Bling' gets new assignment at Vatican Watch

Image of The allegations against 55 year-old Bishop Tebartz van Elst calls attention to the high spending of the archdiocese of Munich and Freising, which has just spent $150 million on a new diocesan service center.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Bishop Franz-Peter Tebartz-van Elst denounced as the "Bishop of Bling" for his extravagant and consumerist lifestyle will now take a post at the Vatican. The former Bishop of Limburg, Germany is set to begin his role as a delegate on catechesis at the ... continue reading


All Europe News

Newsletters

Newsletter Sign Up icon

Stay up to date with the latest news, information, and special offers

Daily Readings

Reading 1, Psalms 116:10, 15, 16-17, 18-19
4 I pleaded with Yahweh my God and made this ... Read More

Psalm, Psalms 116:10, 15, 16-17, 18-19
15 Costly in Yahweh's sight is the death of his ... Read More

Gospel, Mark 9:2-10
2 Six days later, Jesus took with him Peter and James ... Read More

Reading 2, Romans 8:31-34
31 After saying this, what can we add? If God is for ... Read More

Saint of the Day

Saint of the Day for March 1st, 2015 Image

St. David
March 1: According to tradition, St. David was the son of King Sant of ... Read More

Inform, Inspire & Ignite Logo

Find Catholic Online on Facebook and get updates right in your live feed.

Become a fan of Catholic Online on Facebook


Follow Catholic Online on Twitter and get News and Product updates.

Follow us on Twitter