Venezuela’s Government Guarantees Social Protection of Workers Amid Economic War

July 2, 2015

120 VenezuelaVenezuela’s Vice President for Planning and Knowledge, Ricardo Menendez, said the wage increase that took effect on Wednesday is part of a policy of social protection carried out by the government to protect workers against attacks by the economic war.

“This is a demonstration of two vectors that occur in a battle. Those who attack the people seeking to benefit from their pain and a revolution focusing all its efforts in the defense of the people,” he said in a press release.

He explained that 10% increase of the minimum wage amounts to 7,421.67 bolivars, not including food vouchers, which means a 52% of cumulative increase so far this year, representing the “highest percentage ever given in a semester.”

Base salary increased to 5,622.48 bolivars in February, then raised to VEB 6,746.97 in May and 7,421.67 bolivars now in July, totaling three increases throughout 2015.

Besides this increase, there is a food bonus paid to workers which is between 2,250 and 3,375 bolivars monthly.

In the last 16 years, since 1999, the Bolivarian Revolution have instituted 29 minimum wage increases for the Venezuelan working class, not only for active workers but have been extended to pensioners and retirees. This is social justice, said Menendez, gains won by the revolutionary struggles of this sector made visible today.

This policy is part of the social protection system created by the Bolivarian Government, which has also contributed to the creation of 4,793,908 jobs over the last 16 years, so as to lower the unemployment rate from 14.5% in 1999 to 5.5 % by the end of 2014.

This reality contrasts with the nine increases granted between 1974 and 1998, during previous governments, most of them well below the inflation rates of the time.

Since President Maduro took office, he guaranteed that workers’ wages fostered by leader of the Bolivarian Revolution, Hugo Chavez, would be strengthened and protected.

Source: Venezuelan News Agency (AVN)