Havana, January 18. - More than 16,000 families in Cuba receive social assistance as part of the government's actions to protect vulnerable groups from implementing the monetary reform, official sources say.
The head of the Permanent Commission for the Implementation and Development of the Guidelines of the Cuban Communist Party, Marino Murillo, commented on the data on Twitter and added that these actions are part of the government's decision not to leave anyone helpless in the island's new economic scenario.
Since January 1, the Caribbean nation has undertaken a profound reform that includes the unification of currency and exchange, leaving the Cuban peso as the country's only currency, at an exchange rate of 24 pesos per U.S. dollar.
Likewise, salaries and prices were increased, and some subsidies and gratuities were eliminated.
Authorities have reiterated the willingness to protect the most vulnerable groups, including the elderly living alone or low-income families.
According to the Minister of Labor and Social Security, Marta Elena Feitó, who recently appeared on the T.V. program Mesa Redonda, the state budget allocated 700 million pesos --around US$29 million-- for this financial support.
Also, the country has 18 billion pesos (US$750 million) to support companies in a situation of loss due to the implementation of the law, which translates into the protection of more than 300,000 employees.
She explained that the principle is to subsidize people who need it and not products, as it was being done until now.
The minister of Labor and Social Security also affirmed that the programs created to benefit sectors of the population with special situations: grandparents' homes, family care system, homes for the elderly, protection for mothers with children with disabilities, among others, will not be paralyzed and will maintain all their services. (RHC)