Experts and representatives of trade unions and professional associations comprising a committee to review the status of so-called "heavy and hazardous" occupations convened on Wednesday, with the goal being a new list of such professions by July 1. Anew heavy and hazardous code will be in effect as of Jan. 1, 2012.
Alternate Labour and Social Security Minister Giorgos Koutroumanis stressed that the committee is not bound by numbers and does not seek to cut the number of wage-earners who will be included in the list adding, however, that measures will be taken to avoid injustices.
He insisted that the limitation set by the memorandum, according to which, those included in the list of heavy and hazardous vocations should correspond to less than 10 pct of the workforce is not categorical, considering that currently a total of 538,000 workers are registered with Social Insurance Fund (IKA) under hazardous vocation status contrary to occasionally publicised calculations.
Koutroumanis said any changes will be made per vocational category in the public and private sectors, clarifying that in the public sector only the Public Power Corp. (PPC) employees and the municipal sanitation workers hired after Jan. 1, 2011 are recognised as having hazardous vocation status.
“It is important to adjust the list to the changes that have taken place in the labour market by excluding workers who do not have the prerequisites and including new categories of workers,” Koutroumanis stressed.