Gov't OKs Holocaust survivor benefits

Landau, PM agree to subsidize survivors' electric costs by up to 50%.

The government approved at its cabinet meeting on Sunday a series of measures that will significantly reduce the cost of monthly electricity bills for Holocaust survivors, National Infrastructures Minister Uzi Landau announced in a statement on Friday.
Under an agreement reached between his ministry and Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu, thousands of survivors who live below the poverty line will see their electricity costs subsidized by up to 50 percent.
A spokesman for the ministry said Saturday that Netanyahu had already given preliminary approval for the move, which comes ahead of Holocaust Remembrance Day (Monday), and which will be implemented within 45 days with the assistance of Welfare and Social Services Minister Isaac Herzog and the agreement of the Finance Ministry.
“We are talking about an important humanitarian step,” Netanyahu said in a statement. “The government has a responsibility to assist Holocaust survivors and make all efforts to prevent to take care of them properly. Their advanced ages means that we need to act on this as quickly as possible.”
This was only one of a series of steps implemented by the governmentrecently to improve the living conditions of survivors, he added.
Last week, the Welfare Ministry announced subsidies of up to 90% onessential health and medical supplies for Holocaust survivors,including reduced costs for dental treatments, cheaper eye glasses,hearing aid implements and personal counseling.
About 80,000 Holocaust survivors live in Israel, and roughly 7,000 of them live in poverty.