Misc 21/11/2020

The government is adding the finishing touches to a new mechanism to grant freelancers' subsidies

The Generalitat now rules out granting financial aid on a first-come, first-serve basis

2 min
El conseller de Treball, Afers Socials i Famílies, Chakir el Homrani

BarcelonaThe Government is finalising a new mechanism for granting self-employed workers financial aid based on prior registration, following the controversy over the previous call for applications, in which benefits were awarded by competitive tender, i.e. on a first-come, first-serve basis. The Vice-president and acting president, Pere Aragonès; the Minister of Presidency, Meritxell Budó, and the Ministers Chakir el Homrani and Jordi Puigneró have met this Saturday morning to continue working on the design of the new system, which wants to facilitate access to new financial aids.

Self-employed workers will be able to register through the registry, which will be open for several days, and the order in which they register will not be decisive for granting the subsidies. The registry will function as a pre-registration system. With this registration, and in accordance with the corresponding criteria, the Government will be able to proceed quicker in order to distribute the financial aid.

The mechanism is still being finalized, and the Government intends to present the measure in the next Executive Council (which is next Tuesday), in order to activate it in the upcoming days. In fact, once the mechanism is outlined, the second step will be to design the financial aid. The Freelance Work Council is scheduled to meet to analyze how the criteria for receiving the subsidies will be established.

The meeting has also been attended by the General Secretary for the Vice Presidency and for Economy and Finance, Albert Castellanos, and the Secretary of Economy, Natàlia Mas. The general secretaries of the departments involved participated by videoconference.

Previous system's criticisms

The Labour Minister, Chakir el Homrani, has already ruled out using the competitive tender system, through which the first workers to process applications were the first to receive the compensation. His department announced last Wednesday that it was stopping all the subsidies that were being granted on a first-come, first-serve basis, whilst looking for an alternative format.

This comes after controversy took place over a call for self-employed financial aid which was granted on a first-come, first-serve basis, in which the computer system collapsed and not all requests were considered.

Aragonès informed that are working on a new "mechanism of permanent and continuous support to the self-employed" that is "agile" and allows workers to receive "periodic" payments according to the activity of each business. The aim, he explained, is for freelancers to have to provide "the minimum possible" information, since the Government does not want to "be annoying".