WHY should you vote AGAINST the increase in contributions?
THE IMPROVEMENT OF THE ADMINISTRATIVE MANAGEMENT AND GOVERNANCE OF THE FUND MUST PREVAIL ON THE INCREASE IN CONTRIBUTIONS
To date, despite the commitment of the Director-General, there is still no significant improvement, particularly in the field, in terms of delays of reimbursement, strengthening of the staff of the Fund, improvement of the computer system and universal recognition of the Fund. The insured persons already pay a high price for the gradual disengagement of the administration, and this has been the case for more than ten years. The sole response of the administration cannot be to increase contributions, as this would mean that the burden is borne by the insured persons.
THE INCREASE IN CONTRIBUTIONS WILL NOT REDUCE THE REIMBURSEMENT DELAYS
We understood that the main concern of insured persons is timely reimbursement. The increase in contributions has no impact on the real and recurring problems of the Fund, all of which are mentioned in the working group report – namely: lack of staff, computer system not up to date (for which apparently $1 million has already been injected without any evidence of success) – and therefore has no impact on the reimbursement delays.
THERE IS NO LINK BETWEEN THE INCREASE IN CONTRIBUTIONS AND THE INCREASE IN THE BENEFITS PROPOSED BY THE DRAFT AMENDMENTS
The referendum relates exclusively to the section on the increase in contributions and not on all proposed amendments. The proposed amendments concerning the improvement of benefits will be approved even if the increase in contributions is refused. The Staff Union points out that no improvements to the benefits have been registered for at least ten years and that the current proposals should only be a start after such a long period of stagnation. Other improvements, in particular concerning active staff, are more than desirable.
THE FUND IS FINANCIALLY SOUND AND BASED ON THE UNIVERSAL PRINCIPLES OF SOLIDARITY AND MUTUALIZATION
The 2013 actuarial study demonstrates that the Fund is financially sound until 2022. The Fund is global, which invalidates any argument based on an exorbitant cost of treatment only applicable in certain parts of the world.
In conclusion, the Staff Union Committee considers that the arguments in favour of an increase in premiums are not sufficient nor relevant. It believes that the prerequisite for such an increase – particularly the significant improvement of administrative management – are not met.
The major concern of the Staff Union Committee has always been the sustainability of the SHIF and the improvement of working conditions of its employees.