From public purse to family purse
Social spending sees 5 percent increase

PHOTO: Illustratsioon: PM

In command of close to half of state budget, social ministry may report that 2016 brings lots of change into lives of families with children and people with handicaps and loss of working ability. 

Life should become easier and the benefits bigger – at least a little bit: social spending will see over 5 percent of increase from near €3.4bn to almost €3.6bn.

Boosting the three kid family

Referring to studies showing people are dreaming of more than two children, social protection minister Margus Tsahkna says benefits are meant to significantly rise from third child up.

Child protection promoted

The new child protection act enters into force on January 1st 2016 with special unit created at social security agency and €1.4m at the state’s disposal to execute the act (under €300,000 in 2015).

Minister Tsahkna underlines zero tolerance regarding mental and physical abuse of children and enhanced state oversight that each baby gets medical attention.

Better benefits for the poor

Subsistence level rises from €90 to €130. Income tax free minimum rises from €154 to €170.

A little extra for pensioners

For people with 44 years of working life, the average old age pension will be €396.

The handicapped get shorter lines

Rehabilitation service waiting lines will be cut to one year maximum while at preliminary assessment their ranks will be thinned.

Work capacity reform gets underway

Margus Tsahkna: «In 2016, the work capacity reform will gradually be applied. From January 1st, services and help will be provided on new basis of specialist assessment.

Asylum seekers housing financing skyrockets

In 2016, €370,278  will be spent on accommodation to asylum seekers – an increase of 121.5 percent year-on-year as related to the increased numbers. This sum is not regarding the war refugees relocated within Europe but those from third countries as have applied asylum in Estonia and dwell at Vao.