Old man walking with a cane 311.
(photo credit: AP)
Men who lose their spouses could soon see an increase in their state
benefits after the Ministerial Committee for Legislation on Sunday
approved an amendment to the National Insurance Law that would boost
their welfare allowance by almost 20 percent, it was announced Monday.
The bill, which was drafted by MKs Haim Katz, chairman of the Knesset
Health, Labor and Welfare Committee, and David Azoulay, and was backed
by Welfare and Social Services Minister Isaac Herzog and National
Insurance Institute director-general Esther Dominissini, will grant
widowers a state income of up to 75% of the average wage.
Today, widowers receive less than 57% of the average income, as opposed
to widows, who receive the full amount.
The move will cost the state millions of shekels, a Welfare and Social
Services Ministry spokesman said.
Despite fierce protests from the Finance Ministry, which believes that
increasing benefits for widowers will end up reducing those allocated to
widows, Herzog and Dominissini were able to persuade other ministers
involved to back the bill, which is expected to pass the Knesset on
Herzog called the decision a historic one that “will correct an
unfairness that exists in the system.
“This is only the first step to bring benefits and rights for widowers
in line with those allocated to widows,” he added.