Hundreds of workers demonstrate in Ecuador for health and public pensions By EFE       UK

Hundreds of workers demonstrate in Ecuador for health and public pensions By EFE UK

©Portal. Hundreds of workers demonstrate in Ecuador for health and public pensions

Quito, 19 January (EFE).- Hundreds of workers demonstrated this Thursday through the streets of downtown Quito to defend the public model of Ecuadorian social security, to demand the resignation of its key managers and against the government’s commission for the Evaluation of the model to protest pension system.

The mobilization, convened by the Unitary Front of Workers (FUT), the country’s largest union umbrella, started in front of the headquarters of the Ecuadorian Institute of Social Security (IESS) and moved towards the historic center of the Ecuadorian capital.

The persistent rain that fell in Quito this Thursday afternoon did not prevent the unions from concentrating and expressing their opposition to the government’s intentions to reform the IESS to make it more sustainable and financially stable.

In a statement, FUT President Marcela Arellano recalled the executive in which she asserted “that the IESS is not for sale, that the IESS belongs to the workers” and predicted that the commission formed by the government will be attack workers’ rights.

This citizens’ commission, headed by economist Augusto De la Torre, has four months to present a reform proposal and has the technical support of international institutions such as the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB), the World Bank (WB) and the International Labor Organization (ILO). .

Unions and civil society organizations fear the reform will involve the privatization of public health services and the development of private pension funds.

There is currently no private pension system in Ecuador, so every worker contributes to the IESS, which is responsible for administering both social security and pensions for retirees.

In this sense, FUT Vice-President José Villavicencio considered that the Citizens’ Commission is trying to “apply the neoliberal policy of increasing contribution years and reducing old-age pensions”.

Villavicencio also demanded that the executive pay off the accumulated millions of dollars in historical debt owed to the IESS.

The President of the Confederation of Unitary Class Organizations of Workers (Cedocut), Mesías Tatamuez, in turn accused the government of wanting to privatize the IESS with the Citizens’ Commission created and formed “behind the backs of the affiliates,” unionists say, by people associated with related to the International Monetary Fund (IMF).

“We will not get any closer to the IMF. We will get closer to the people and the affiliates, and we will set up our own technical commission to defend insurance and government,” he concluded.

(photo) (video)