Spanish Prime Minister, José Luis Rodríguez Zapatero, says he is confident that new jobs will start to appear in the second half of 2010 (article in Castilian, El Periodico). The creation of new jobs is regarded by experts as a sign of economic growth, which is why authorities in all countries currently experiencing recession are anxiously waiting for new posts to be created. Before this happens, however, employers tend to fill posts that existed previously but were cut to save money and, where appropriate, increase the number of hours worked by full-time staff whose timetables were reduced to a part-time schedule, again to save money. Talking to radio station Ser, Zapatero said that the worst of the current crisis has passed in Spain and now the country faces the task of recovering and dealing with the high level of unemployment.
The Generalitat plans to provide more help to single-parent families in Catalunya (article in Castilian, La Vanguardia). This move, which is the first of its kind in Spain, will see single-parent families receiving a special card giving them access to various forms of assistance, which will be similar to what is already given to ‘large’ families (those with three or more children). The change needs to be approved by the Executive Council of the Catalan government tomorrow, but there is not expected to be any delay to what is an amendment of the 2003 Law for the Support of Families. As a result of the update, the definition of such a family unit will be fixed and clarification provided about what has to be done to obtain the title of a single-parent family. Benefits for these families will include help in obtaining council housing and annual funding of €745 for those parents with a child up to six years old. From next year, single-parent families will also be able to take advantage of a series of financial discounts and assistance with university education.
Forty-three percent of public school-teachers have started this term in a new school (article in Catalan, Avui). Various factors have contributed to this high level of new faces in Catalan schools, but it is mainly down to the system of ‘opposiciones’ (exams done to obtain a civil servant role) that means some have changed school while they wait for a permanent position, while others are given on loan to another school, as well as the arrival of the latest people to pass their teaching exams. There is also a significant number of temporary teachers working in public schools here. The Catalan Education minister, Dolors Rius, has said that this situation is making it difficult to consolidate teams of teaching staff and to move forward with specific projects and strategies to improve the level of education here.
Also in the news: Johan Cruyff considers job as Catalan football team coach (La Vanguardia); Neighbours protest against new Barceloneta hotel (Avui); Vilanova i la Geltrú have commission to organise popular vote on Catalan independence (Avui)