Family benefits law amendments sent to Riigikogu for first reading

Riigikogu. Source: Siim Lõvi /ERR

Amendments to the Family Benefits Act which will cut subsidies for large families by €200 have been sent to the Riigikogu for their first reading.

Starting next year, benefits for families with between three and six children will be reduced to €450 a month and to €650 for those with more than seven.

The changes have been drafted by the parliament's Social Affairs Committee which plans to increase the maintenance allowance but cut benefits.

The initial bill was agreed by the previous coalition less than a year ago.

Committee leader Õnne Pillak (Reform) said cuts need to be made to balance the budget.

"This kind of overspending, which started about six years ago, and the three crises — the health crisis, the energy crisis, and the ongoing security crisis — have left a huge hole in our budget. It is our responsibility to leave a well-funded state for our children so that they do not have to pay the price later for living beyond their means," she said.

Committee Vice-Chairman Riina Solman (Isamaa) called the new coalition's actions abnormal. 

"We simply do not accept that the coalition comes in with its first bill and takes money away from families with children. In fact, it is simply being given from families with children to richer people. We disagree with that. It's abnormal actually," she said.


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Editor: Aleksander Krjukov, Helen Wright

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