The first phase of the Social Solidarity Income programme will begin with a meeting at the labour, social insurance and social solidarity ministry on Wednesday afternoon, in order to prepare for its implementation. The meeting will include the 30 municipalities selected for the first phase, which starts in July and ends in December 2016, during which the SSI will be given to an estimated 40,000 households.
Speaking in Parliament, Alternate Labour Minister Theano Fotiou said the programme will take into account the experience gained during the programme to tackle the humanitarian crisis, as well as the pilot programme for distributing a minimum income in 13 municipalities.
In the second phase, the programme will be implemented throughout Greece, providing benefits in the form of cash and services to beneficiaries, as well as assistance for their inclusion in working and social life.
The municipalities chosen for the first phase of the programme include: Orestiada and Kavala in Eastern Macedonia-Thrace, Nea Ionia, Aspropyrgos, Elefsina, Fyli, Agioi Anargyroi-Kamatero, Egaleo, Keratsini-Drapetsona, Nikea-Ag. Ioannis Rendis and Perama in Attica, Lesvos in the Northern Aegean, Kastoria in Western Macedonia, Aigialeia and Pyrgos in Western Greece, Arta in Epirus, Elassona and Trikala in Thessaly, Zakynthos in the Ionian Islands, Veria, Pavlos Melas, Kilkis and Katerini in Central Macedonia, Lamia in central Greece, Gortyna and Rethymno in Crete, Kalymnos and Leros in the Southern Aegean and Sikyonia and Kalamata in the Peloponnese.
The 30 municipalities will be a testing ground for any adjustments needed ahead of the SSI's implementation on a nationwide basis from January 1, 2017. In the remaining 295 municipalities not included in the first phase, the programme against the humanitarian crisis will continue until December 31.