Läänemets: Family support system needs to be revised

Lauri Läänemets visiting Reform's election night party.
Lauri Läänemets visiting Reform's election night party. Source: Ken Mürk/ERR

Leader of the Social Democratic Party (SDE) Lauri Läänemets said in light of looming coalition talks with Eesti 200 and the Reform Party that the current family benefits system should be made more fair. The tax system should also be reviewed.

"I am convinced we will make child benefits fairer. The Social Democrats promised as much at elections, and it needs a solution regarding first and second children where there is a measure of injustice today," Läänemets said.

He emphasized that people's coping is the most important thing for SDE.

"As concerns the tax burden, taxes are not a thing in itself. We have various things in our program we would like to see done. We have dared say that major expenses cannot be made without looking at costs. Now, things depend on what we can agree on and how to pay for it," Läänemets said.

"As concerns various income tax promises (amending the basic exemption – ed.), I have indicated to Kaja Kallas that the Social Democrats want to improve the situation for people earning modest income, rather than in the other end of the spectrum. We found there might be room for a compromise in which SDE's vision could be accommodated," he added.

Läänemets could not say whether that compromise would mean Reform's promise of a universal €700 basic exemption would not happen.

Talking about ministerial and other postings, Läänemets said that all of the positions to be filled by the coalition need to be seen together, in which context he also believes it necessary to agree on who will be the next European commissioner from Estonia.

The SDE leader suggested that experience from the recent coalition showed relations might become strained without prior agreements.

Läänemets also said he is convinced the implementing provisions of the Registered Partnership Act will be approved during this Riigikogu's term.

"The Social Democrats have promised to make the proposal. I hope our partners will come along. I cannot imagine the Reform Party or Eesti 200 blocking it as they have made the same promise. We will also be raising the marriage equality topic. But it will need to be tackled differently than the implementing provisions. In the end, it will be one or the other." Läänemets remarked.

He sees SDE as a balancer in the coalition to be negotiated as both Reform and Eesti 200 are right-wing parties.


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Editor: Marcus Turovski

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