Crisis leads to poverty: EU-imposed austerity policies have sent Spain and the whole region into recession, say unions
The EU is ‘stubbornly’ continuing ‘evidently failed policies’ that are ‘causing devastating effects on employment and on the level of poverty and social cohesion in Spain as well as many other countries in the EU.’
This was the response of trade union central Comisiones Obreras to the demand by the EU on Monday that Spain cut its deficit to 5.8% of gross domestic product this year, more than the 5.3% planned.
‘New turn of the screw’ slammed
If the Mariano Rajoy government’s plan to reduce spending by €30 billion this year will ‘deepen the recession’, send unemployment to six million and lead to a ‘serious deterioration’ in public services such as education, health and social services, the ‘new turn of the screw’ by the EU, IMF and European Central Bank will add to these negative effects, the union said.
‘The austerity policies, budgetary adjustments and structural reforms imposed by European institutions since May 2010 haven’t met their explicit objectives: to resolve the sovereign debt crisis and rapidly reduce debt and deficit levels.
‘They have taken the EU from recovery to recession, with intolerable jobless queues, poverty and inequality.
Austerity threatening whole European project
‘Their complete failure is putting into question, from a social and political point of view, the whole European project.’
Comisiones Obreras described as ‘particularly intolerable’ the statement on Monday by Eurogroup President Jean-Claude Juncker that he was ‘highly concerned by the high unemployment and increasing poverty’ in the country, but that Spain nevertheless had to make an additional ‘effort’ by cutting the deficit by another 0.5% of GDP this year.