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The eco decryption. Unemployment insurance: even modified, the reform will penalize 40% of the unemployed


A Pôle emploi agency in Marseille (Bouches-du-Rhône). Illustrative photo. (NICOLAS TUCAT / AFP)

Elisabeth Borne, the Minister of Labor, repeats that this reform, launched well before the crisis, remains necessary. It suffices to adapt it to the context and its solution is to play on the calendar, to implement the measures when the economic situation becomes more bearable. When the unemployment rate will be a little lower.
For example, to have unemployment rights, with the reform, you must have worked six months and no longer four months over the last two years. This provision will only be triggered if the number of vacancies returns to near normal levels.

The same goes for the declining benefits of those who earned more than 4,500 euros gross per month, ie the decrease in benefits as time passes. The measure is suspended until April 1 but it would only apply depending on the improvement in the labor market for executives. Job seekers should therefore earn a few months before the toughening of certain rules.

Elisabeth Borne will meet all the unions on Tuesday March 2. They were already opposed to this reform before the crisis. In the context, they find it even more punitive than before for the unemployed. Especially since these postponements only concern a few provisions, not all. For example, the new calculation of the amount of allowances, much less advantageous in particular for those who alternate periods of work and inactivity and would apply from this summer. Even modified, this reform would very quickly penalize 40% of the unemployed. While for companies, the famous bonus-malus, ie the taxation of precarious contracts, would not occur before the end of 2022, at best. A double standard, two unfair measures according to the unions.

The government is trying to save money. Before the crisis, the objective was already to save up to more than one billion euros per year to the system. The goal has not changed: even if this billion euros in savings may seem derisory in view of the losses linked to the pandemic. Little is known, but unemployment insurance, for example, pays a large third of the bill for partial unemployment which allows employees to remain in their jobs. Deficits are exploding and forecasts point to a debt of over 70 billion euros next year… Unheard of since the system has existed.

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