Turkish PM heralds free public services for old and disabled people
People older than 65-years-old and all disabled people will be able to use public transportation for free. Hürriyet photoPrime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan announced on Feb. 12 a series of new measures such as free public services for the transportation of the families of deceased soldiers, veterans and for elderly people, increased employment of disabled people by state institutions, as well as increased employment of disabled people as teachers.
“At a time when much trouble is experienced in the world, particularly in the eurozone region, here are Turkey’s practices. They are not able to do this. Here is our difference,” a proud Erdoğan said in an apparent reference to EU countries, while addressing his Justice and Development Party’s (AKP) parliamentary group.
According to Erdoğan’s announcement, the children and parents of public servants who died after becoming disabled while in service, the children and parents of public servants who became disabled while performing public order or security services, the children of war veterans, and all disabled people will be able to use public transportation for free.
In cases of seriously disabled citizens, a companion of these citizens will also be able to use the same free services. People older than 65-years-old will also be able to use local public transport in every province of Turkey without charge.
Recalling that 27,224 disabled people are currently working in public institutions at the moment, Erdoğan said 8,115 more would be employed in 2013.
He said the Education Ministry, the Family and Social Policies Ministry, and the Directorate of State Employees had been working on a plan for the employment of disabled teachers.
“We do not recognize an understanding that says that ‘disabled people cannot be teachers,’” Erdoğan said.